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News

Composite bearings with Vespel for silent-running electrical motors

Du Pont Engineering Polymers : 25 October, 2001  (New Product)
A new type of DuPont Vespel polyimide bushing with a cushioning elastomer jacket moulded around it ensures long-term silent, unlubricated and vibration-free operation of small, high-speed, electric motors up to 2 kW. Motors of this kind are widely used in the automotive industry, domestic appliances and power tools. DuPont has applied for patents for these new low-wear plastics bushings, which meet a number of objectives DuPont fixed when development started. The aim was to develop bushings that are silent and need no lubricants or maintenance. This also allows for the use of fewer components and easier assembly in electrical motors.
A new type of DuPont Vespel polyimide bushing with a cushioning elastomer jacket moulded around it ensures long-term silent, unlubricated and vibration-free operation of small, high-speed, electric motors up to 2 kW. Motors of this kind are widely used in the automotive industry, domestic appliances and power tools.

DuPont has applied for patents for these new low-wear plastics bushings, which meet a number of objectives DuPont fixed when development started. The aim was to develop bushings that are silent and need no lubricants or maintenance. This also allows for the use of fewer components and easier assembly in electrical motors.

The combination of two complementary materials contribute to the development's success. DuPont Vespel polyimide, widely used for bushings in the aeronautics and automotive industries, ensures long-term low-friction and low-wear properties. The elastomer jacket's damping effect prevents the occurrence of critical operating conditions at the shaft-to-bearing interface, which would cause squeaks or other undesirable noises at higher rotational speeds.

DuPont carried out fundamental investigations into these new composite bearings in co-operation with the University of Liège, Belgium. Building on the experience gained, the company applied for a patent for the concept of combining Vespel with elastomers for unlubricated bushings supporting rapidly rotating shafts. DuPont and Le Joint Français, a company in the Hutchinson Group, have carried out a large number of tests with these new composite bushings on different types of electric motors to confirm the results of the fundamental investigations. Trials in both companies have fully confirmed that Vespel bushings can be effectively jacketed in elastomeric materials in large-scale production.

Continuing investigations at DuPont and Le Joint Français are aimed at further reducing vibration, noise and wear at various temperatures, loads, speeds and stress profiles. Various applications are currently undergoing tests at customers' installations. First commercialisation of the new composite bushings is planned for 2002.
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