Our technical expertise, technology and experience in the field of fluid film bearings and seals define us. But we’re not trying to justify a particular technology for its own sake. (While we’re proud of our Fluid Pivot® tilting pad journal bearing technology, it may not be appropriate for your particular application.) While some companies tout “engineering” but only offer “reverse engineering” or what they want to sell you out of a catalog, we serve our customers with non-biased professional engineering services to provide custom-engineered bearing solutions.
DESIGN LESSONS LEARNED FROM MANUFACTURING AND REPAIRING BEARINGS
Our theoretical knowledge is enhanced and influenced by what we’ve observed over the decades in our manufacturing and repair departments.
From our heritage of manufacturing large bearings for and designed by power generation OEMs, we’ve learned to seek “value engineering” opportunities in our own designs. We strive to avoid unnecessary costs.
From what we’ve observed in our bearing repair department (where we see hundreds of examples of bearing damage every year), we’ve learned to incorporate into our solutions the best design features for performance and life extension while avoiding features that actually may contribute to bearing damage.
We start with a solid grounding in tribology. Our engineering manager is an active member of and contributor to STLE (Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers). Our engineers have a thorough understanding of materials, friction, lubrication and wear not merely from their formal education but from actually working with large rotating machinery.
Our knowledge of and experience with radial and thrust bearing theory, materials, operations and maintenance is unsurpassed in our industry. Armed with a full set of complex diagnostic tools, we are ready on short notice to perform an analysis of rotordynamics, critical speeds, thrust bearings, oil cooling systems and bearing damage root cause.
Yet the origins of our engineering solutions arise from a simple habit – listening. Our best ideas don’t begin around a conference table in our offices. They begin with our customer. That’s why the first step in our engineering process is: “We listen.” We know that a superior solution starts with an in-depth understanding of the customer’s needs. So we’re not afraid to crawl around machinery and ask “dumb questions”. We integrate the customer into the design/solution process.
Illustrating the many facets of Pioneer’s Engineering department. Click to enlarge.
Pedestals and housings for fluid film bearings using oil lubricants generally have seals to control the lubricant flow and prevent leakage. In electrical motors, such leakage can contaminate the electrical windings. In some facilities leakage can lead to environmental concerns. These seals will have slightly more clearance than the bearings to avoid rubs.