Development of an isothermal journal bearing employing heat-pipe cooling technology

Gang Chen*, Qian Wang, Yiding Cao, Chunyin Tso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


This paper reports the development of an isothermal journal bearing by employing heat-pipe cooling technology for improved thermal-tribological performance. A stainless-steel bearing with a number of heat-pipe grooves which use methanol as the working fluid was designed and constructed to verify the heat-transfer mechanism in the isothermal journal bearing. The constructed journal bearing was tested to evaluate its thermal performance. The experimental results indicated that the heat pipe uniformly distributes the “frictional heat” along the entire circumference of the bearing. As a result, the journal bearing becomes a nearly isothermal element. Experimental data also indicate that with the heat pipe as a heat sink, the bearing can work at a much higher thermal load.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)401-406
Number of pages6
JournalTribology Transactions
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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