Rolling Bearing Condition Monitoring Technique Based on Cage Rotation Analysis and Acoustic Emission


  • Matias Marticorena National Atomic Energy Comission of Argentina, Argentina
  • Oscar García Peyrano Balseiro Institute, Cuyo National University, Argentina



rolling element bearing, condition monitoring, cage instantaneous angular speed, acoustic emission, cyclostationary analysis


The objective of this paper is to present an approach for the detection of change in rolling element bearings (REB) operating conditions that can lead to premature failure. The developed technique is based on the measurement of the kinematics of the bearing cage. The rotational motion of the cage is driven by the traction forces produced in the contacts of the rolling elements with the races. It is known that the cage angular frequency relative to shaft angular frequency is dependent of the bearing load, the bearing speed and the lubrication condition, as these factors are determinant for the lubricant film thickness and the associated traction forces. As an important part of REB failures are caused by misalignment or lubrication problems, any evidence of these conditions should be interpreted as an incipient fault. In this paper a novel method for the determination of the instantaneous angular speed (IAS) of the cage is developed. The method is evaluated in a deep grove ball bearing test rig equipped with the cage IAS sensor, as well as custom acoustic emission (AE) transducer and a piezoelectric accelerometer. The cage IAS is analyzed under different bearing loads and shaft speed, showing the dependence of the cage angular speed with the calculated lubricant film thickness. Typical bearing faulty operating conditions (mixed lubrication regime, lubricant depletion and misalignment) are recreated and it is shown that the cage IAS is dependent on the lubrication regime and is sensitive to misalignment.  The AE signal is used as a lubrication regime evaluator as well. Experimental results show that the proposed technique can be used as a condition monitoring tool to detect abnormal REB conditions that can lead to premature failure.


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How to Cite

Marticorena, M., & García Peyrano, O. (2022). Rolling Bearing Condition Monitoring Technique Based on Cage Rotation Analysis and Acoustic Emission. Journal of Dynamics, Monitoring and Diagnostics, 57–65.



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