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Effect of Bearing Cleaning on Long Term Bearing LifeFor many years chlorofluorocarbon (CFC ) based solvents, such as Freon and 1,1,1, Trichloroethane (TCA), were used as bearing cleaning solvents for space mechanisms. The 1995 ban on the production of ozone depleting chemicals (ODC) such as CFCs caused a change to new ODC-free cleaners for the precision bearing cleaning. With this change the question arises what effect if any do these new cleaners have on long term bearing life. The purpose of this study was to evaluate this effect. A one year test using 60 small electrical motors (two bearings per motor) was conducted in a high vacuum environment (2.0* 10(exp -6) torr) at a temperature of 90C. Prior to testing the bearings were cleaned with one of four cleaners. These cleaners included two aqueous based cleaners, a CFC based cleaner and supercritical carbon dioxide. Three space compatible greases were tested. After testing the mass of each lubricated bearing was measured both pre and post test. Along with mass loss measurements a profilometer trace of each bearing was taken to measure post test wear of the bearings. In addition the bearings were visually examined and analyzed using an optical microscope.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Marshall Space Flight Center
Document Type
Jett, Timothy Raymond
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL United States)
Thom, Robert L.
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1998
Subject Category
Mechanical Engineering
Meeting Information
Meeting: Aerospace Environmental Technology
Location: Huntsville, AL
Country: United States
Start Date: June 1, 1998
End Date: June 3, 1998
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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