Study of design parameters for squeeze film air journal bearing – excitation frequency and amplitude
Abstract. The paper presents a design of squeeze film air journal bearing based on the design rules derived from CFX and FEA simulation study of an air film in between two flat plates, one of which was driven in a sinusoidal manner. The rules are that the oscillation frequency should be at least 15 kHz and that the oscillation amplitude be as large as possible to ensure a greater film thickness and to allow the bearing to reach its stable equilibrium quickly. The proposed journal bearing is made from AL2024-T3, of 20.02 mm outer diameter, 600 mm length and 2 mm thickness. Three 20-mm long fins are on the outer surface of the bearing tube and are spaced 120° apart; three longitudinal flats are milled equi-spaced between the fins and two piezoelectric actuators are mounted lengthwise on each flat. Such a design produces a modal shape on the bearing tube which resembles a triangle. When excited in this mode at the frequency of 16.37 kHz, and a voltage of 75 V AC with 75 V DC offset acting on the piezoelectric actuators, the air gap underneath of the bearing tube behaves as a squeeze air film with a response amplitude of 3.22 μm. The three design rules were validated by experiments.