PCD Bearings

Diamond Tilt Pad Bearings

Waukesha Bearings has partnered with US Synthetic, the leader in diamond solutions, to offer breakthrough performance in diamond tilt pad bearing technology.

Combining the benefits of Waukesha’s tilt pad thrust bearing design with the superior wear resistance of US Synthetic’s polycrystalline diamond (PCD) technology, the diamond tilt pad thrust bearing provides superior bearing performance and extended life in equipment operating at high loads and speeds in low-viscosity lubricants, abrasive fluids or corrosive chemicals.

Polycrystalline diamond tilt pad thrust bearing and collar


Diamond tilt pad thrust bearings:

  • Have been run at speeds up to 39 m/s and unit loads up to 16 MPa
  • Simplify equipment and assemblies by eliminating the need for seals and separate lubrication systems
  • Can operate at a low coefficient of friction:
    • Between 0.05 and 0.08 in direct contact during starting mode
    • Below 0.002 in hydrodynamic operation
Polycrystalline diamond tilt pad thrust bearing and collar
Polycrystalline diamond tilt pad thrust bearing and collar

PCD Properties

PCD is not a diamond coating. It is a thick, manmade diamond surface ideally suited for operation in process fluids where abrasive particles can cause accelerated wear and failure with traditional bearing materials.

PCD is known for:

  • High thermal conductivity, which reduces localized temperature extremes that lead to bearing degradation
  • Low coefficient of friction, which decreases heat generation and reduces power loss
  • High hardness and fracture toughness, which resists wear from abrasive particles

Intro to Bearing Materials

The selection of the bearing materials plays a significant role in the performance of fluid film bearings. Load, speed, operating temperature, insulation requirements, and lubricant type and cleanliness may all play into the material choice.

Download our “Introduction to Fluid Film Bearing Materials” for an overview of material characteristics, benefits and limitations in fluid film bearing use.

Download the White Paper