We Test Bearings in Space

By: | April 9th, 2020

Image by Marie Sjödin from Pixabay

You might have known this earlier, but bearing manufacturing companies used to send industrial size bearings to space for rigorous performance.

However, recently the successful relationship CeramicSpeed had with GomSpace came to an end. They are a Danish Nanosatellite manufacturing facility.

GomSpace is a manufacturing facility specializing in making innovative platforms and components. They also specialize in conducting intricate, complex, and rigorous tests. In those tests, CeramicSpeed has certified bearings that go through high-quality trials. These are some of the best bearing GomSpace makes.

GomSpace excels in producing hand-built bearings, which are suitable for industrial use, and aerospace researchers use them for developing aerospace technology. GomSpace wants to engage with the global space system and service market.

When you want to use a bearing for making a spacecraft, it needs to pass some extreme tests. Space has the harshest conditions you can imagine. Bearings need to be strong enough to deal with extremely fluctuating temperatures, violent G-forces, and vacuum environments. These extreme conditions are sufficient to tear a whole spacecraft into shreds.

GomSpace matches the bearings with Si3N4 balls. These balls consist of thermal expansion of Coefficient. This factor of the ball makes it the best fit for harsh conditions in space. It can survive the extreme fluctuation in temperatures and the environment.

For the past three years, bearing manufacturing companies have been trying to make a better combination for bearings that is stronger and more durable. However, the test designs are still converged in a ceramic hybrid bearing solution. These newer models are custom made to come through all tests in the aerospace industry.

GomSpace says during these years, bearings pass through a variety of tests that are difficult and challenging to pass, and only the best of bearings can pass. The tests are on the standards set by the European Space Agency (ESA). 

The CeramicSpeed bearings are still some of GomSpace’s best bearings with extended life. They had the highest number of successful projects and collaborations, and some of them have come to an end.


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