Evaluation of Frictional Heat and Oil Cooling Rate in Mechanical Contact Due to Debris Formation

Achebe C. H., Nwagu I. A, Chukwuneke J. L. & Sinebe J. E


This paper evaluated experimentally, the amount of frictional heat generated in a Mitsubishi main journal bearing and the cooling performance of the lubricating oils A, B and C. The test rig used in this experiment is a mechanical apparatus that consists of mechanical drive, metal support, bevel gear, a rotating shaft and a bearing attached at its lower end. When the shaft was rotated by the mechanical drive of power 0.75kw and speed 1440rpm, the frictional force in journal bearing helped to convert the mechanical energy of the drive into frictional heat. The amount of heat absorbed from the surface of the journal bearing by the oil cooled the surface. The cooling rate of the oil was obtained at each time interval. The vibrating movement of the molecules helped to transfer the frictional heat to the lubricant and the calorimeter. This effect caused the temperature of the system to rise. The frictional heat generated at the contact increased linearly with the change in temperature in the mechanical contact which was absorbed differently in the three lubes, depending on their heat capacity and molecular movement. When there was no debris in the contact, the temperature changed within the range of 1.2-1.80C at interval of 3minutes in oil B, 10C in oil C and 0.8-1.20C in oil A. When there was sand debris in the contact, the temperature changed within the range of 2-2.50C at interval of 3minutes in oil B, 1.5-20C in oil C and 20C in oil A. Oil B has the best cooling performance based on the three local lubes used and was equally the most expensive. Mechanical failures like galling, fatigue and surface indentation occurred when the vibrational force (energy) of the molecules were greater than the binding force or energy of the atomic lattice of the bearing.

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