State control of combined roller and plain bearings

SFB 805 | transfer project T6

Within the transfer project, a combined roller and plain bearing is equipped with sensors for online monitoring. With that, its functionalities are deeply investigated in order to quantify the industrial applicability of the bearings. The project aims for the utilization of the bearings as sensor elements in the drive trains of presses to monitor the actual bearing as well as machine conditions. Equipping the bearing with active components should furthermore enable the possibility to influence its functional properties.


Forming technology is characterized by high productivity and excellent material utilization but also by high financial investments for machines. Press development trends towards flexible machine technologies with a wide range of applications and high adaptability to existing production conditions. Pioneers of such machine technologies are servo presses, which have an almost freely adjustable movement kinematics of the ram and thus considerably expand the limits of forming presses and processes1. However, the increase in machine flexibility results in more extreme stress scenarios and thus a significant increase of the requirements on the machine elements. Especially bearings of presses experience a significantly higher load, which no longer can be fulfilled using single plain or roller bearings. In order to provide a backlash free bearing, which is simultaneously capable of transferring high loads, a combined roller and plain bearing (Figure [1]) has been developed. Its industrial applicability is now to be quantified. For this purpose, the combined roller and plain bearing is sensitively monitored in transfer project T6.

[1] active sensory roller and plain bearing

Methodical approach

The project has two phases. These are the development and investigation of sensory monitored roller and plain bearings on the one hand and the development of active bearing components on the other. First of all, industrial requirements on active roller and plain bearings are quantified. On the basis of these requirements, sensory bearings are developed. Simultaneously a test bench for the condition monitoring of the roller and plain bearings is built. The test bench is used to carry out a continuous test execution and evaluation with regard to defined technological and economic criteria as well as a comparison with conventional bearings. The limits of the bearing functionality as well as its emergency running characteristics are determined. The focus lies on the detection of the bearing defects and its impact on the bearing behavior. Based on the gained information, active bearing components are developed and designed in the second part of the project. Lastly the active bearings are investigated on the test bench and a comparison to the passive bearing combination is given.


The project is funded by „Deutsch Forschungsgemeinschaft“ (DFG) in terms of the Collaborative Research Centre CRC 805 – “Control of Uncertainties in Load-Bearing Mechanical Engineering Structures“


[1] Osakada, K.; Mori, K.; Altan, T.; Groche, P.: Mechanical servo press technology for metal forming. CIRP Annals – Manufacturing Technology 60, pp. 651-672, 2011