Equivalent Clearance Model for Solving Thermohydrodynamic Lubrication of Slider Bearings With Steps

Hideki Ogata, Joichi Sugimura

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)


    This study focuses on the thermohydrodynamic lubrication (THD) analysis of fluid film bearings with steps on the bearing surface, such as Rayleigh step. In general, the Reynolds equation does not satisfy the continuity of fluid velocity components at steps. This discontinuity results in the difficulty to solve the energy equation for the lubricants by finite differential method (FDM), because the energy equation needs the velocity components explicitly. The authors have solved this issue by introducing the equivalent clearance height and the equivalent gradient of the clearance height at steps. These parameters remove the discontinuity of velocity components, and the Reynolds equations can be solved for any bearing surfaces with step regions by FDM. Moreover, this method results in pseudocontinuous velocity components, which enables the energy equation to be solved as well. This paper describes this method with one-dimensional and equal grids model. The numerical results of pressure and temperature distributions by the proposed method for an infinite width Rayleigh step bearing agree well with the results obtained by solving full Navier-Stokes equations with semi-implicit method for pressure-linked equations revised (SIMPLER) method.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number034503
    JournalJournal of Tribology
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2017

    All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

    • Mechanics of Materials
    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Surfaces and Interfaces
    • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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