On the Influence of Lubricant Supply Conditions and Bearing Configuration to the Performance of (Semi) Floating Ring Bearing Systems for Turbochargers Academic Article uri icon


  • © 2018 by ASME. Engine oil-lubricated (semi) floating ring bearing ((S)FRB) systems in passenger vehicle turbochargers (TC) operate at temperatures well above ambient and must withstand large temperature gradients that can lead to severe thermomechanical induced stresses. Physical modeling of the thermal energy flow paths and an effective thermal management strategy are paramount to determine safe operating conditions ensuring the TC component mechanical integrity and the robustness of its bearing system. The paper details a model to predict the pressure and temperature fields and the distribution of thermal energy flows in a bearing system. The impact of lubricant supply conditions, bearing film clearances, and oil supply grooves is quantified. Either a low oil temperature or a high supply pressure increases the generated shear power. Either a high supply pressure or a large clearance allows more flow through the inner film and draws more heat from the hot journal, thought it increases the shear drag power as the oil viscosity remains high. Nonetheless, the peak temperature of the inner film is not influenced by the changes on the way the oil is supplied into the film as the thermal energy displaced from the hot shaft into the film is overwhelming. Adding axial grooves on the inner side of the (S)FRB improves its dynamic stability, albeit increasing the drawn oil flow as well as the drag power and heat from the shaft. The results identify a compromise between different parameters of groove designs thus enabling a bearing system with a low power consumption.

author list (cited authors)

  • San Andrés, L., Yu, F., & Gjika, K.

citation count

  • 2

publication date

  • October 2017