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Low-Cost Ball/Air/Magnetic Hybrid Bearing System for Extended-Life Micro Gas Turbine Engines

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N00014-10-M-0279
Agency Tracking Number: N10A-037-0168
Amount: $69,579.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N10A-T037
Solicitation Number: 2010.A
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2010
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2010-06-28
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2011-04-30
Small Business Information
124 Commonwealth Cir
Charlottesville, VA 22901
United States
DUNS: 605736862
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Erik Swanson
 President/Chief Engineer
 (434) 296-6094
Business Contact
 Erik Swanson
Title: President/Chief Engineer
Phone: (434) 296-6094
Research Institution
 Widener University
 Joseph J Baker
One University Place Office of the President
Chester, PA 19013
United States

 (610) 499-4156
 Nonprofit College or University

Micro gas turbine engines with state-of-the-art ultra-compact recuperators could be a real game-changer for small unmanned air vehicles and portable power generation. A key enabling technology for these engines is a low-cost, high speed bearing system that has long life, while operating without either a separate lubrication system, or oil in the fuel. For this Phase I STTR effort, Xdot Engineering and Analysis will evaluate the feasibility of a novel non-contact oil-free thrust bearing. This thrust bearing is particularly well suited for a hybrid arrangement where grease-lubricated rolling element bearings provide the radial support for a small, very high speed shaft. This thrust bearing is expected to have load capacity, stiffness and life suitable for these gas turbine applications. The bearing combines high levels of performance with very low production costs, even for small production volumes. The Phase I evaluation effort will include high speed testing of a prototype bearing, as well as an analytical evaluation of a self-contained thermal management strategy. The Phase I Option focuses on analysis/design tool development, and a potential way to further decrease the production cost.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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