Pillow block bearings, also known as plummer blocks, are a type of bearing commonly used in machinery that provides support for a rotating shaft. These bearings are designed to be easily mounted and dismounted, and they are often used in the food processing sector due to their durability and resistance to contamination.
The food processing sector has a unique set of requirements when it comes to machinery and equipment. This industry demands high standards of cleanliness and hygiene to prevent contamination of food products. For this reason, manufacturers of food processing equipment must use materials that are easy to clean and can withstand harsh cleaning solutions.
In the food processing industry, stainless steel austenitic grades 304 and 316 are often used as they have high chromium content. These types of steel are often referred to as food-grade stainless steel. Steel 316 is slightly more resilient against chlorides due to the content of two to three percent molybdenum, which makes it ideal for processing food high in salt. Overall, 300 series stainless steel has exceptional corrosion resistance making this material suitable for this industry. Some bearings for the food industry may be made from martensitic 400 series stainless steel as well. Martensitic stainless steel is an alloy with more chromium and usually no nickel in it while austenitic stainless steels have from 8 to 10% nickel content.
Seals and Shields Being Used
Another important design feature of pillow block bearings for the food processing sector is their ability to resist contamination. This is achieved through the use of seals and shields that prevent debris and contaminants from entering the bearing. Additionally, many pillow block bearings for the food processing sector are designed with a smooth surface, which reduces the likelihood of bacteria or other contaminants becoming trapped in the bearing.
Lubrication of bearings in the food industry
Lubrication plays an important role in extending the life of bearings and improving their performance. Special lubricants are required to withstand severe conditions in cooking processes and during sanitization. The choice of bearing lubrication is subject to regulatory requirements in the specific operation type or product and depends on the specifications of the application.
Steel bearings will often use solid lubricants in the food industry. These lubricants are composed of supermolecular weight polyethylene and lubricating grease. Solid lubricants have a few advantages for this application such as:
● Longer life -This means that machinery can run for extended life cycles without maintenance and reduce the risk of exposure to food processing areas.
● Better leak resistance -Solid lubricants do not leak when exposed to water.
● Reduced contamination risk -Solid lubricants reduce the risk of empty pockets forming in the bearing and becoming filled with contaminants.
The NSF white book is referenced frequently when choosing lubricants for bearings.
The design of pillow block bearings for the food processing sector must also take into account the need for easy maintenance and replacement. In many cases, these bearings are located in hard-to-reach areas, making maintenance and replacement difficult. For this reason, manufacturers of food processing equipment may opt for pillow block bearings with features such as split housings or removable seals, which make maintenance and replacement easier.
In conclusion, the design of pillow block bearings for the food processing sector must take into account a variety of factors, including resistance to corrosion, resistance to contamination, ease of maintenance and replacement, and durability. By using high-quality materials and incorporating features that meet the specific needs of the food processing industry, manufacturers can ensure that their equipment operates safely and efficiently, without risking contamination of food products.
Our factory is specialized in making stainless steel pillow block bearings. Plastic Housings With Stainless Steel Insert Bearing are available as well. If you have more requirements on Lubrication of bearings, kindly contact us as well.
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