Worldwide, more than 50% of lubricants are discharged into the environment.
(State of Baden-Württemberg Environmental Protection Agency)
At a world-wide lubricant consumption of 37.3 million tons annually, this results in more than 18 million tons of uncontrolled discharge into the environment
Malfunctions due to deficient lubrication cause $240 billion in damage in the US alone
(MIT), Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The right plain bearing...
... for every application
... made of plastics
... tested and predictable
... dirt-resistant and corrosion-free
... lightweight and quiet
... Reduce costs and increase service life
... extensive standard product range and individual design
... delivered from stock in 24 hours
The base polymer is crucial for wear resistance.
Fibers and filling materials reinforce the bearing to take high forces or edge loads.
Finally the solid lubricants self-lubricate the bearings and prevent friction in the system.
Cost saving offered through elimination of maintenance work
Avoidance of lubricants
No central lubrication system required
igus® operates the largest laboratory of its industry with over 200 test stands for varied types of application and loading scenarios.
The iglide® plain bearing application spectrum ranges from applications in packaging and medical technology, which avoid lubricants for hygiene reasons, to highly contaminated applications, ex. in agricultural engineering.
igus® develops special plastics - triboplastics - that are optimized for various applications with respect to wear and as a result the service life.
Testing on various shafts determines the materials with the longest service life for any application - whether rotating, pivoting, linear, fast or slow, high or low loads, dry or submerged.
"Bearing materials marked by special properties such as low coefficients of friction in dry operation, chemical resistance and low humidity absorption in equal measure are best suited for the application in high-tech beverage bottling plants. ”
Bernfried Götz, KHS AG, Monzingen
iglide® plain bearings are very robust in contaminated environments, primarily because lubricants are avoided. - Dirt particles do not adhere to a lubricant coating on the shaft or the bearing location. - Dirt can even be partially embedded. In place of a soft and thin gliding surface that can easily be damaged by abrasive particles, there is a homogeneous material structure across the entire wall thickness.
1. Wear rate [µm/km]
2. iglide® Q
3. iglide® G300
4. iglide® Z
5. Brass with initial lubrication
6. Rolled metal with gliding layer
A host of tests in the igus® tribo lab show what has been confirmed in field through use in industries such as agricultural engineering, wood processing, construction machinery, etc.: iglide® plastic plain bearings are rugged and have a long service life even under the most adverse conditions, while also protecting the shaft.
The external demands on custom bearings developed by igus® when used on the job during Summer are extremely high. "These primarily involve radial forces", explains the design engineering manager at FELLA-Werke GmbH, Grad. Eng. (FH) Bernhard Kohl. In order to protect plain bearings against damage from these crash events, they must be impact-resistant and very robust. “ Then there is dust and dirt plus finally high pressure washing. “Rough conditions and long service lives with possible corrosion on the steel parts place very high demands on the plastic bearings,” says Bernhard Kohl.
The dry-running properties of iglide® plain bearings are not only advantageous in contaminated environments. The absence of lubrication is also an important criterion in applications with elevated requirements for hygiene and purity.
All standard tests at the igus® tribo lab are conducted without lubricants. Only special customer-specific tests are conducted with contact to media - incl. lubricants when appropriate. This approach allows us to optimize our materials for dry running conditions, and we therefore know in detail what service life can be expected.
Bearings L280 and iglide® Q are seated in all bearing points of the artificial knee joint. The bearings require no maintenance, operate without clearance and exhibit only minimal wear. Moreover, they should run free of noise, dampen impacts and have a good price/performance ratio.
All iglide® plastic plain bearings are by their nature corrosion-free. There are also special purpose materials, which can be used in caustic solutions, acids, cleaning agents, etc., and, due to their media resistance, can be used even under the most adverse conditions. - The product range also has special purpose materials for permanent use in submerged conditions.
Submerged testing in the igus® tribolab has resulted in iglide® materials that play to their strengths primarily in these specialized applications. - In this case, the medium is not necessarily always water; other liquid media are also used.
The enormous increase in service life of the roller chain is due to its special joint structure. A high-performance polymer bearing from igus® was integrated in a stainless steel carrier bushing, "which significantly enhanced the tribology of the chain joint." According to the customer's statement, "the plastic plain bearings raise the bar with extremely high wear resistance, a low friction value, high compressive strength, and chemical resistance." “
Weight reduction plays an important role in a host of applications, which plastic bearings are ideally equipped to address. - This could involve the need to attain an increase in energy efficiency, or to increase cycle rates and speeds.
Due to their low material density, plastic plain bearings have significant advantages compared to metallic alternatives with respect to the topic of weight reduction.
For instance, weight reduction plays a predominant role in aviation. In this case, the use of plastic plain bearings in the seat kinematics, luggage panels, food trays and other applications in the cabin area is helping to achieve significant weight reductions.
Quiet operation is primarily of significance where people are directly affected. Comfort and well-being are materially impacted by background noise.
The igus® tribo lab is all ears when it comes to the topic of noise profile. After all, what use is an unlubricated plain bearings with a long service life when it screeches and grinds?
"A gliding body was required to fulfill the following functions: It should glide on drawn aluminum profile (column), the material must be abrasion resistant, the gliding movement should be free of noise, the gliding body cannot leave behind traces and it should possess a ten-year service life. After several rejected solution proposals, only the material from igus® remains. It began functioning at first go, and five years have passed since. ”
Hanna Tielebier, Carl Zeiss AG, Jena
Expansive wear data from more than 15,000 tests each year under various conditions help to identify the ideal material for any application.
Determine your ideal bearing material - on your own, or with our assistance. Using the iglide® product finder and the iglide® service life calculator.