Machine designers increasingly rely on earlier and more predictively accurate simulations to accelerate product development, help eliminate errors and reduce the need for physical prototypes. In many mechanical systems, such as gearboxes or electric drivetrains, bearing performance is a critical driver of overall system performance.
However, simulation of bearings is challenging since their behavior depends on load characteristics and fine geometric details that are not readily available to designers or simulation teams. With the new SKF Bearing App for the popular Ansys Mechanical Finite Element Analysis (FEA) software, engineers no longer need to rely on approximations or complex, unreliable models in their simulations.
“With this new integration, we are taking the burden of bearing simulation away from the user’s system and doing it ourselves” explains Hedzer Tillema, product manager engineering software at SKF. “Our calculations consider the detailed contacts between the rolling elements and the raceways of the bearing, and full details of the micro-geometry.”
“The partnership with SKF is a great example of empowering engineers to gain detailed insight into the performance of their designs early on” says Mark Hindsbo, VP & GM at Ansys. “No one knows bearings better than SKF and that knowledge is now available to every Ansys Mechanical user.”
In the Ansys integration, the user first selects their chosen bearing using a user-friendly wizard. The App then communicates with a SKF cloud server to obtain a predictively accurate representation of the stiffness of a real bearing.
The SKF Bearing App for Ansys can simulate any of approximately 10,000 common bearings in the SKF range, and its data is continually updated to ensure that users always have access to the most current, predictively accurate information. The app supports static as well as dynamic analyses where harmonics or vibrations are important considerations.
SKF cloud services are used to deliver predictively accurate, up-to-date information on bearing performance and stiffness to a wide range of engineering design tools. Customers can use these services to calculate key performance parameters such as bearing rating life, friction, grease life and relubrication intervals, static safety, and minimum load. In addition to the new Ansys integration, detailed bearing stiffness models are also available for the KISSsoft and FVA Workbench analysis platforms.
SKF software specialists are continually extending and expanding the capabilities of these software integrations, as well as extending the approach to new platforms, including customers’ proprietary in-house product development environments.