Analyzing the Effects of Lubrication Techniques on CNC Spindle Bearing Heat: An Experimental Investigation
Received: 29 June 2023 | Revised: 10 July 2023 | Accepted: 16 July 2023 | Online: 13 October 2023
Corresponding author: Tuan-Anh Bui
The machining ability and accuracy of a machine are determined by parameters such as the stiffness and load capacity of its spindle unit. In addition, the effectiveness and technique of lubrication and cooling can significantly affect the operational characteristics of the machine spindle. The current study investigated the effects of two different lubrication methods, grease and air-oil mixture, on the temperature which is generated at the spindle bearings of a Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machine. The temperature distribution and rise rate of the bearings were measured using a thermal imaging camera and thermocouples. The results indicated that the air-oil mixture method was more effective in dissipating heat and reducing the temperature of the bearings than the grease method, due to the direct cooling provided by the air-oil mixture to the bearing balls, resulting in improved lubrication efficiency and heat exchange with the environment. Compared to the grease lubrication method, the temperature of the bearings was lower by 7°C to 9°C depending on the position of the bearing on the CNC spindle. Therefore, it is recommended to use the air-oil mixture lubrication method, especially for high-speed processing on CNC machines. However, the discharge of oil particles from the ventilation system should be carefully controlled. Overall, the findings offer valuable insights into optimizing lubrication methods for CNC machines to enhance processing quality and reduce the impact of temperature on the bearing performance.
Keywords:spindle bearing, Lubrication method, temperature distribution
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