The new SKF Low Weight Hub Bearing Unit crucially combines light alloy and steel materials to deliver around 20% to 40% lower weight compared with traditional plain hub bearing units. The use of steel provides the necessary performance for the roller bearing component, and lightweight aluminium is used on the integrated flanged structural component for ease of mounting and service.
The new unit can be used on both driven and non-driven wheels and has undergone extensive research and testing to ensure the materials and design would maintain stiffness, endurance and structural integrity under corrosive conditions and varying operating temperatures. Despite the partial change from all steel to lighter steel-aluminium, the new bearing unit achieves similar levels of performance and reliability.
These significantly lighter SKF units are custom designed for stiffness and strength. This allows automotive manufacturers increased marketing potential with energy efficiency gains and improved vehicle dynamics through reduced un-sprung rotating mass, plus greater load capacity for commercial vehicles. It also provides end users with lower running costs and improved vehicle handling.
With car manufacturers looking to minimise fuel consumption of their latest models, the need to use new energy efficient technologies has never been greater. This is driven by ever tighter environmental legislation to reduce CO2 emissions; especially in our major cities, rising fuel costs and increased end user demands on higher efficiency and reliability. With millions of cars and light commercial vehicles on the roads today, this new development in advanced hub design from SKF will have a significant impact in reducing CO2 emissions not only in the UK but around the world thanks to the company’s global support network.
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