NSK Develops Ultra-long-life Ball Bearings for Transmissions

NSK Ltd. (NSK; Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan; President and CEO: Norio Otsuka) today announced that it has developed ultra-long-life ball bearings (EBR*) that will help make automotive transmissions more compact and lightweight, to contribute to improved fuel economy. NSK will aggressively promote this product to automobile manufacturers in Japan and overseas and expects annual sales to reach 3.5 billion yen in 2015.

NSK will exhibit this product at Tokyo Big Sight (located in Koto Ward in Tokyo) from Wednesday November 30 to Saturday December 11 at the Tokyo Motor Show 2011.

In recent years there has been demand to make automotive transmissions more compact, lightweight and more efficient in response to a worldwide tightening of fuel economy regulations. On the other hand, there is demand to make the bearings used in transmissions sufficiently durable to withstand surface-originated flaking (flaking that starts at the surface), since these bearings are used under harsh lubrication conditions. At the same time, the viscosity of transmission lubricating oil is expected to be lowered and the lubricating film made thinner with a view toward improving fuel economy, resulting in increasingly greater demands for bearing durability.

NSK carried out more thorough research into the mechanism of surface-originated flaking and discovered that bearing life can be further improved by strengthening the rolling element. Featuring dramatically increased durability achieved by strengthening the rolling element, the new product, combined with long-life technology cultivated thus far by NSK (TF technology), will contribute to the pursuit of more compact and lightweight transmissions, with less friction.

NSK will aggressively promote this product to automobile manufacturers in Japan and overseas.


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