Combined experimental and multiphase computational fluid dynamics analysis of surface textured journal bearings in mixed regime of lubrication

This paper investigates the effect of surface texturing in a partial pad journal bearing through a series of controlled experiments at operating conditions, promoting mixed or boundary regimes of lubrication. Improvements to load carrying capacity are observed under certain operating conditions. A comprehensive computational finite volume multiphase fluid dynamics analysis, including vapour transport equation and modified finite-size cavity Rayleigh-Plesset model, is used to study the effect of indented surface textures in the microscale contact domain and within the individual textures themselves. The results show improved conditions with a textured journal through promotion of micro-hydrodynamic effect, delaying the effect of lubricant rupture, thus extending the effective load bearing region. A very good agreement is obtained between measurements and predictions.