NTN and Motion Australia have enjoyed more than 50 years of successful partnership in the bearings industry. As a trusted global scale bearing manufacturer, NTN has kept the market on its toes throughout the years with increasingly advanced bearings technology—and the recent roll out of the new NTN ULTAGE range is no exception. 

ULTAGE is the new NTN standard production range of their latest bearing designs, developed to meet the requirements of heavy industry’s most demanding applications. The new range includes spherical roller bearings, tapered roller bearings, cylindrical roller bearings and a variety of other specialised and industry-specific bearings products. 

The namesake ULTAGE derives from the words ‘Ultimate Stage’ according to Ross Lee, Technical Manager of Strategic Partnerships —Bearings for Motion Australia. “Ultimate”- signifying refinement level and “Stage” signifying the series advanced technology and suitability for diverse applications. 

“Across this new range of products are a number of game-changing advantages both in the materials of the bearings and the design geometries,” says Ross. “The result is significantly higher load ratings and so, extended service life, higher operating temperatures, greater tolerance of misalignment, and better resistance to contamination.”  

“Longer service life and higher rotational speeds deliver greater application flexibility in an industry such as mining and mineral processing where there are ever-increasing loads, elevated operating temperatures, and ever-present contamination—which is the arch nemesis of bearing performance.” 

According to Ross, a few of the key features worth highlighting from the ULTAGE range of Spherical Roller, Tapered Roller and Cylindrical Roller Bearings fall into a few categories, as covered in outlines by NTN bearings engineering experts. 

Load Rating 

Maximised roller diameters and lengths, along with associated high strength design cages, deliver significantly increased, industry leading, dynamic load ratings and bearing life.

Stress concentration reductions with ULTAGE internal design enhancements

Under heavy loading, stress concentration can be generated, which ultimately reduces bearing life. Edge stress can be generated when heavy loading is combined with bearing misalignment. The ULTAGE design creates smooth stress distribution across the rolling contact area, reducing edge stress. Even under harsh conditions, the optimised internal geometry of the ULTAGE product line will reduce stress, leading to longer bearing life.

ULTAGE bearing material

Special alloys and heat treatment processes deliver a tougher bearing material capable of 200°C continuous ambient operating temperatures without reduction in life. Optimum rolling and sliding contact surface finishes- reducing frictional torque and temperature rise, enhance efficiency.

More specifically, Ross highlights some of the key elements to the different varieties of ULTAGE bearings series types.

ULTAGE Spherical Roller Bearing advantages 

The new window type pressed steel and wear resistant surface treated cage results in allowable speeds up to 20% higher than NTN conventional design. Additionally, the optimised internal design results class leading bearing load ratings, testing shows over three times longer life than previous bearing life. Sealed type ULTAGE Spherical Roller Bearings are also available to prevent the entry of contaminants. 

ULTAGE Tapered Roller Bearing advantages 

An optimised roller crowning results in up to 30% higher dynamic load ratings and testing shows three times longer bearing life. Improved surface finishes and specific profiles reduce torque and temperature rise, increasing max allowable operating speed by 10%. These bearings are also dimensionally interchangeable with conventional Tapered Roller Bearing sizes.

ULTAGE Cylindrical Roller Bearing advantages

With up to 20% higher dynamic load rating nearly doubling bearing life, this type has optimised internal geometry that increases maximum speeds by 20%. These bearings are also dimensionally interchangeable with conventional Cylindrical Roller Bearings. 

“Overall, NTN ULTAGE delivers the operator an improved bottom line due to less downtime and maintenance,” concludes Ross. “In cases where bearings are subjected to tough operational demands, customers in the mining and quarrying sector will recognise the difference in the performance and reliability of their equipment with these new generation of bearings.”