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Long-lasting bearings in solar thermal water pump for developing countries

Profile

  • What was needed: Plain bearings for various pivoting and linear movements in the mechanics of a solar thermal water pump
  • Requirements: Long service life, freedom from lubrication and maintenance, cost-effective
  • Field of application: Fluid technology, renewable energy
The company BSR Solar Technologies GmbH develops solar products for worldwide application. One of them is Sunpulse Water, a motor that uses the energy of solar radiation to drive a highly energy-efficient water pump through a thermal power process. The product is intended to be manufactured and applied mainly in developing countries and to offer an alternative to the usual diesel pumps powered by fossil energy. The goal is to make a decentralised, sustainable energy and food supply possible.

Sunpulse Water 09 pre-production sample from BSR for assembly The Sunpulse Water as 09 pre-production sample during assembly

Problem

In order to implement various pivoting and linear movements in the complex gear unit of the solar water pump, the designers were looking for suitable plain bearings. They should be as cost-effective as possible, ideally require no maintenance and have a long service life.

Solution

The solution: dry-operating iglidur plain bearings made of durable high-performance­plastic. For the rod guide (1), plain bearings of the X series resistant up to +250°C are used at the top, and iglidur G bushings for all-round use are used in the transverse steering (2) and in the connecting rod bearing arrangement (4) with high alternating loads. Slotted M250 double flange bearings are clipped into the o-shaped connecting rod (3), which is made of laser-cut sheet metal and is particularly impact-resistant, vibration-dampening and wear-resistant. Also made of M250 material are collar bushings used in the lower rod guide (5).

BSR solar thermal water pump Sunpulse Water Pump Gear Unit
BSR solar thermal water pump 08 prototype of the Sunpulse Water in field test in Portugal
BSR solar thermal water pump Bearing locations with iglidur plain bearings of the X, G and M250 series: Rod guide at top (1), transverse steering (2), o-shaped connecting rod made of sheet metal (3), connecting rod (4), rod guide at bottom (5)

Further information

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