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1. WO2020192880 - COMPLIANT FOIL RADIAL BEARING

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[ EN ]

CLAIMS

1 . A compliant foil radial bearing comprising:

a bushing comprising a bore defined therethrough;

a spring foil arranged to conform to a radially inner surface of the bore;

a fluid foil arranged to conform to a radially inner surface of the spring foil for rotatably receiving a rotor, wherein:

the radially inner surface of the bore comprises a plurality of axially oriented pads arranged around the circumference thereof.

2. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 1 , wherein: the spring foil comprises a plurality of axially oriented loops arranged to fit within axial grooves formed between adjacent pads.

3. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 2, wherein: the loops and grooves are arranged thereby to define a clearance between a radially outer portion of the loops and a radially outer portion of the grooves.

4. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 2 or 3, wherein: the circumferential width of each groove decreases in a radially inward direction.

5. The compliant foil radial bearing according to any preceding claim, wherein:

each pad comprises a radially inner surface arranged to support the spring foil between circumferentially spaced axially oriented contact regions formed by contact between the radially inner surface and the spring foil.

6. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 5, wherein: the contact regions comprise a plurality of axially-spaced contact points in the axial direction.

7. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 5, wherein: the contact regions comprise a continuous line contact in the axial direction.

8. The compliant foil radial bearing according to any preceding claim, wherein:

the pads are arranged such that variation in a circumferential direction exists between surface profiles defined by the pads.

9. The compliant foil radial bearing according to any preceding claim, wherein:

the bushing and pads are unitary.

10. The compliant foil radial bearing according to any preceding claim, comprising:

first and second circumferentially spaced spring foil members.

11. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 10, comprising: one or more axially oriented fluid foil retention pins, wherein:

each fluid foil retention pin is arranged to fit in between adjacent pads thereby to secure the fluid foil with respect to the bushing.

12. The compliant foil radial bearing according to claim 11 , wherein: the one or more fluid foil retention pins are arranged to fit within radially outer retaining regions of axially oriented grooves formed between adjacent pads.

13. The compliant foil radial bearing according to any preceding claim, wherein:

the spring foil comprises a plurality of axially oriented spring foil segments; and

each spring foil segment is arranged to fit around one of the axially oriented pads.

14. The compliant foil radial bearing according to any preceding claim, comprising:

a plurality of axially oriented spring foil retention pins, wherein: each spring foil retention pin is arranged to fit in between adjacent pads thereby to secure the spring foil segments with respect to the bushing.

15. A method of manufacturing a compliant foil radial bearing comprising: providing a bushing comprising a bore defined therethrough;

forming a plurality of axially oriented grooves within the radially inner surface of the bushing thereby to define a plurality of axially oriented pads arranged around the circumference of the bore.