Proven Solutions for Rigorous Demands

Gas and steam turbines are among the most vital – and most demanding – equipment in power generation.

Turbine bearings are often subjected to high loads, high speeds and high temperatures, especially as capacity and efficiency demands increase.

To ensure optimum dynamic characteristics in specific operating conditions, Waukesha Bearings applies a variety of specialized design features to bearing solutions.

Tilt Pad Bearings

Depending on size, gas and steam turbines typically use tilting pad journal and thrust bearings, sometimes in combined assemblies. ‘Directed Lubrication’ is usually employed to minimize power loss and oil flow and to reduce pad surface temperatures.

To handle the high speeds and high loads, gas turbine thrust bearings often require the use of copper chrome (CuCr) backing material and assured pivoting mechanisms.

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Maxalign® Journal Bearings

For large-frame gas and steam turbines, our Maxalign bearing is an industry leader. Central to the design is a patented ball and socket pivot support which provides high stiffness with superior dynamic alignment. The Maxalign design is optimized for shaft sizes 300 mm (11.8″) and up.

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Flexure Pivot® Journal Bearings

For micro gas turbines, our Flexure Pivot tilt pad bearing can provide the stability of a tilt pad bearing in the compact design envelope of a sleeve bearing. In addition, the integral pad-pivot-retainer design minimizes manufacturing tolerance stack-up and eliminates pivot wear – further improving stability.

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‘Directed Lubrication’

Minimize power loss and increase load capacity with ‘Directed Lubrication’, an industry standard for improved bearing performance.

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Advanced Materials for Added Benefits

Engineered Polymers

In oil-lubricated gas turbines, polymer-lined tilt pad thrust and journal bearings can replace babbitt bearings to withstand high temperatures resulting from heat soak. This high-temperature capability provides additional safety in the event the back-up lubrication system fails or can even eliminate the need for a back-up system, saving on both weight and cost.

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Aluminum Tin

Aluminum tin (AlSn)-lined tilt pads provide higher load capacity than whitemetal pads due to higher temperature capability and greater fatigue resistance. This higher load capacity can be leveraged to upgrade equipment capacity or to improve efficiency.

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Read how AlSn-lined thrust pads enabled a series of performance upgrades on a heavy-duty gas turbine in “A System Integration Approach for Heavy-Duty Gas Turbine Upgrades Using Improved Rotor Thrust Predictions and Application of Advanced Thrust Bearing Designs.”

(Authored by Bavassano F, Mantero M, Traverso R, Livermore-Hardy R, Blair B. Published in ASME Turbo Expo 2017: Power for Land, Sea, and Air, Volume 5B: Heat Transfer: V05BT15A012. doi:10.1115/GT2017-63647.)

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Leading Vibration Solutions

With our in-depth understanding of system rotordynamics, Waukesha Bearings offers proven solutions to improve stability and control vibrations. Chief among those solutions, our ISFD® technology provides highly engineered damping and stiffness to maximize energy dissipation at the bearing locations.

ISFD Technology Rotordynamic Analysis

Case Study

For a power generation customer in Scandinavia, Doosan Škoda Power engineered a 46 MW steam turbine as part of a combined cycle system. When high subsynchronous vibrations forced a trip in turbine operation at just 27 MW versus the rated 46 MW, the ISFD design provided the rotordynamic stability needed to achieve full power output.

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Brush Seals

Minimize leakage gaps and increase operational efficiencies in gas and steam turbines with Waukesha Bearings brush seals. The compliancy of a brush seal allows sealing clearances to be significantly reduced, while our unique modular design can reduce repair costs.

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Magnetic Bearings

Waukesha leads the industry in custom-engineered magnetic bearing systems for large turbomachinery and high-performing rotating equipment. Compared to oil-lubricated bearings, magnetic bearings can provide increased reliability and availability, greater efficiency, quieter operation, more consistent rotordynamic characteristics and decreased maintenance. With built-in monitoring and diagnostic capabilities, Waukesha magnetic bearing systems also allow remote observability and adjustments and integration into customer IIOT platforms.

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