A COOL SOLUTION
Changing technologies in an existing product platform is always a risky proposition and never to be taken lightly — especially when the existing technology is proven to work. Such was the case in 2010 when the world’s largest manufacturer of air conditioners, Zhuhai Gree Electric Appliances, decided to replace their rotary compressors with scroll compressors.
Scroll compressors, which compress the refrigerant in an air conditioner, offer a number of advantages over rotary compressors, particularly for cooling large spaces. Zhuhai Landa, a subsidiary of Zhuhai Gree that focuses on compressors, had never manufactured scroll compressors before, and they brought GGB in at the beginning of the process to identify plain bearing solutions for the main and orbit scroll bearing.
The bearings for this application must provide very good friction properties, heat resistance, durability and wear properties. Because the compressor is a closed system, it’s not possible to access the bearings to perform maintenance. Further, any failure of the bearing would likely result in catastrophic failure of the entire air conditioning unit.
GGB assembled a team of sales and engineering professionals who evaluated the operating parameters and performance requirements, and determined that the DP10 low friction bearing would be the ideal solution.
The DP10 plain bearing consists of a metal backing that is bonded to a lead-free sliding layer made from a blend of PTFE and solid lubricant. With very good dry and oil lubricated performance, low friction and wear resistance, the DP10 offers an excellent combination of performance and price.
Zhuhai Landa subjected the sample bearings to rigorous testing for more than a year, with GGB providing communication and technical support throughout the validation process. Based on the performance of the bearings and GGB’s technical support and delivery capabilities, Zhuhai Landa selected the DP10 low-friction bearings for their new scroll compressor operations. Thanks to GGB’s partnership and assistance over the seven years that the scroll compressor line was in development, its launch was a resounding success.