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New breakthrough! High rigidity and long life automotive wheel hub bearings made in Xiangyang, China

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Nov 23,2023

In the past, the third generation sedan wheel bearing units used in high-end cars in China relied entirely on imports, but not long ago, this situation was broken. The "Research and Industrialization of High Rigidity and Long Life Automotive Hub Bearing Units" project, jointly developed by Hubei New Torch, Hubei University of Arts and Sciences, and Dongfeng Nissan Passenger Vehicle Company, not only won the second prize of Hubei Science and Technology Progress Award, but also filled the domestic gap in the production of third-generation high-end sedan hub bearings.

New breakthrough! High rigidity and long life automotive wheel hub bearings made in Xiangyang, China

Ge Zhihua, Minister of Hubei New Torch Research Department, introduced: "This product is a front wheel hub bearing that we provide to Dongfeng Nissan Xuan Yi, which can achieve self preloading.

The main function of automobile wheel hub bearings is to bear weight and provide precise guidance for the rotation of the wheel hub. It must withstand both axial and radial loads. Previously, due to insufficient lifespan and stiffness, domestically produced wheel hub bearings were mainly used in mid to low-end models and domestic brand models. The third generation wheel hub bearings with high stiffness and long lifespan all relied on imports.

Ge Zhihua said, "Before this project was launched, our product had a relatively short sealing life, and 50% of after-sales problems were caused by sealing rings. There was a problem of insufficient rigidity for vehicles with high handling

In 2013, Hubei New Torch, Hubei University of Arts and Sciences, and Dongfeng Nissan Passenger Vehicle Company worked together to focus on the development and industrialization of high stiffness and long life automotive hub bearing units, with a focus on technical breakthroughs in product negative clearance detection, raceway heat treatment, sealing, and shaft riveting assembly.

Ge Zhihua introduced: "The rainwater, vehicles wading in water, and the high temperature brought by braking on the road all need to ensure the normal operation of the inner parts of the wheel hub bearings, without entering water droplets. We have ensured the feasibility of sealing technology through hundreds of simulation analyses, hundreds of bench tests, and dozens of models with 100000 kilometers of market application experience

To extend the service life of wheel hub bearings, it is necessary to accurately adjust the deformation caused by squeezing the ball in the wheel hub bearing raceway, which is the negative clearance, to ensure the best performance and longest service life of the bearings.

Wang You, a lecturer at the School of Mechanical Engineering at Hubei University of Arts and Sciences, said, "The control of deformation and preload involves increasing the deformation, and preload is preload. To achieve simultaneous control of both aspects, similar to multi-objective optimization problems, there are many aspects to consider. We first used theoretical calculations to determine the relationship between negative clearance and preload, and then developed relevant detection equipment to achieve accurate measurement of negative clearance

Li Jiangquan, a research and development engineer of Hubei New Torch, said, "We have solved the problem of quantitative detection of negative clearance and obtained customer recognition. The products we have detected through bench experiments are in line with the negative clearance law and meet the requirements

After three years of unremitting efforts, the new product of high stiffness and long life automotive wheel hub bearings developed by the cooperative team has a service life of 300000 kilometers, which is higher than the national standard of 250000 kilometers. It has been verified by main engine manufacturers such as Dongfeng Nissan, Volkswagen, Hyundai, and Geely. Over the past four years, the company has produced over 18 million sets of products, achieving domestic substitution.

Ge Zhihua said: "Next, we will continue to deepen our efforts in the hub bearing market segment, become stronger and larger in this industry, and strive to support Mercedes Benz, BMW and Audi. Like some German and Japanese enterprises, we will become small and sophisticated, and become an international invisible giant."


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