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Lightweight and temperature-resistant bearings: flying altitude world record with hot air balloon

Cojinetes de polímeros participan al record mundial de altura de vuelo

Componentes ligeros y fiables cerca de la atmósfera exenta de oxígeno

India: el industrial y aviador Dr. Vijapat Singhania estableció un nuevo record mundial de altura de vuelo con un globo aerostático. 21,290 metros muy exactamente.
Según los diseñadores, los Cojinetes de plástico iglidur® ligeros y fiables, fabricados por el especialista e investigador en polímeros igus® GmbH en Colonia, tuvieron un papel decisivo en el hecho de alcanzar alturas ingentes.

Profile

  • What was needed: iglidur plain bearings
  • Requirements: They were looking for operationally reliable and lightweight bearings that could withstand extreme temperatures and the dirt and grime of the fields in India during take-offs and landings.
  • Industry: Aerospace, aviation industry
  • Success for the customer: The iglidur plain bearings are universally applicable and can be used with extremely high loads, strong vibrations and high dirt accumulation. They are very wear-resistant, even with rough shafts or especially abrasive ambient conditions.

Hot air balloon

Problem

A conventional hot air balloon has a large fabric valve at the top. This parachute valve is opened by the pilot pulling a cord when the balloon is to descend. This mechanism has now been arranged in the pressurised capsule by installing two hand wheels on each side of the pilot seat. For this, the hand wheels had to be connected to a drum outside the capsule through a shaft, fixed with a bearing solution. By cranking, Pilot Singhania could open and close the parachute valve. In addition, a bearing solution was also needed for the operating levers of the main and emergency escape hatches. Finally, bearings should also be used for the construction of a lightweight, sliding seat base. The seat base is built in with a pair of variable gas-powered struts that must absorb most of the load during heavy landing and should reduce the risk of injury to the pilot. This also means high stress for the bearing solution.

Solution

The project manager from Flying Pictures Space Ltd. was looking for plain bearings for the various bearing positions in the application that functioned completely reliably and were very lightweight. They also had to cope with the extreme temperatures and dirt and grime in the fields of India during take-off and landing. Therefore iglidur G plain bearings are used, which we supply from stock in over 650 dimensions. The plain bearing solution is universally applicable and can thus also be used for extremely high loads and strong vibrations. They are insensitive to dirt, among other things. In addition, iglidur W300 bearings are used, which are particularly wear-resistant, even with rough shafts or especially abrasive ambient conditions.


Hot air balloon
Hot air balloon

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