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Photovoltaic Plants with Tracking Systems

Tracking systems for photovoltaic plants considerably increase the efficiency of the process of collecting the sun's energy. In conventional widths, photovoltaic plants with tracking systems facilitate an increase in performance of up to 40% compared with static units. Movable units, however, can generate maintenance work that can reduce the cost-efficiency of a project.

Daher gilt der Grundsatz: hohe Zuverlässigkeit bei niedrigen Kosten

Hoher Preisdruck fordert wirtschaftliche Lösungen zum Beispiel aus Großserienfertigung. Die spanlos hergestellten Schrägrollenlager der Baureihe AXS können in vorhandene und neue Konstruktionen integriert werden und ermöglichen kompakte und lebensdauergeschmierte Lagerungen. Wartungsfreie INA-Metall-Polymer-Verbundgleitlager mit guten Notlaufeigenschaften sind ein weiteres wirtschaftliches Beispiel.

Photovoltaik-Konzentratorkraftwerke fokussieren Sonnenstrahlen auf hocheffiziente Mehrfachsolarzellen und benötigen wie solarthermische Anlagen eine sehr genaue Nachführung. Kompakte Schneckengetriebe übernehmen hier beispielsweise die Ausrichtung der Anlage mit einer Genauigkeit von Zehntelmillimetern. Die Schaeffler-Ingenieure betrachten das Aggregat als System und wählen mit dem selbst entwickelten Berechnungsprogramm Bearinx® die optimalen Lager unter Berücksichtigung aller Rahmenbedingungen aus.

INA plain bearings

Metal-polymer composite plain bearings
Metal-polymer composite plain bearing, half-shell

Metal-polymer composite plain bearings

Metal-polymer composite bearings are a cost-effective alternative for applications with minimum available space and a comparatively high sliding speed. In solar power plants, they can be used in the bearing supports of tracking systems, for example in the elevation axis. Our plain bearings are available as bushes and flanged bushes, as well as thrust washers, half-shells, and strips.

Advantages:
  • Low maintenance or maintenance-free
  • Wear-resistant
  • Constant low friction values throughout the whole operating period
Plain bearing bush with ELGOTEX
Plain bearing bush with ELGOTEX

Plain bearing bushes with ELGOTEX

Plain bearing bushes with ELGOTEX are resistant to shocks and tilting. Customer-specific solutions with special dimensions or special tolerances, for example, are available on request. The bearings are available with and without integrated seals.

Advantages:
  • Maintenance-free
  • Extremely robust
  • Very good damping behavior
  • Low wear with a constant friction value (dry lubrication)
  • Resistant to contamination
  • Corrosion-resistant
Plain bush with ELGOGLIDE
Plain bush with ELGOGLIDE

Plain bushes with ELGOGLIDE

Plain bushes with ELGOGLIDE have excellent damping behavior. Bearings with an additional coating applied to the steel support body as anti-corrosion protection are also available. These plain bearing bushes are also available with integrated seals.

Advantages:
  • Maintenance-free
  • Extremely high static and dynamic load carrying capacity within a small design envelope
  • Dry lubrication
  • Very low friction
  • Very low breakaway torque without the "stick slip" effect

INA spherical plain bearings

Maintenance-free spherical plain bearing
Maintenance-free spherical plain bearing

Maintenance-free spherical plain bearings

Maintenance-free spherical plain bearings are used as dry plain bearings for precise swiveling motion of parabolic troughs without stick-slip. Different ELGOGLIDE and PTFE sliding layers as well as designs with an additional anti-corrosion coating are available depending on the application and loads.

Advantages:
  • High load carrying capacity and low weight
  • Very suitable for slow and precise swiveling movements
  • Long rating life
Spherical plain bearings requiring maintenance
Spherical plain bearing requiring maintenance

Spherical plain bearings requiring maintenance

Bearings requiring maintenance must be lubricated due to the steel/steel or steel/bronze sliding contact surface. When designing the bearing support, it must be ensured that the bearing position can be adequately supplied with grease. These bearings are available as radial, angular contact and axial bearings.

Advantages:
  • Wide product range
  • All lubricants for initial greasing are tested before use in our in-house lubricant laboratory
Rod end
Rod end, maintenance-free

Rod ends

Rod ends are used as linking elements in levers, linkages, and hydraulic and pneumatic cylinders. They support radial loads in a tensile or compressive direction. Rod ends are available with internal or external threads as maintenance-free variants or variants requiring maintenance.

Advantages:
  • Corrosion protection
  • Can be clamped or welded

INA axial angular contact roller bearings

With its AXS axial angular contact roller bearings, Schaeffler has developed a bearing series with a particularly small cross-section that is capable of supporting very high loads.

Typical applications are reflector adjustment systems. These rolling bearing supports facilitate the movement of the azimuth and elevation axis in double-axis drive units.

Axial angular contact roller bearings AXS comprise thin-walled drawn bearing rings and injection-molded plastic cages with cylindrical rollers. They can support axial forces as well as radial forces and tilting moments. When fitted in pairs, they can transfer very high loads safely. Axial angular contact roller bearings are suitable for O and X arrangement.

INA axial angular contact roller bearing
AXS axial angular contact roller bearing
Advantages:
  • High load carrying capacity and rigidity
  • Precise guidance accuracy
  • Small axial and radial design envelope
  • Especially suitable for low speeds

INA slewing rings

INA slewing rings are used in solar power plants for the precise alignment of particularly large reflectors and collectors, for example in double-axis tracking systems with two separate drives. In the case of separate drives, slewing rings are used in the bearing supports of azimuth axes.

INA slewing rings are known worldwide as premium products in the field of rolling bearing technology. A single bearing can reliably support radial, axial and tilting moment loads. It is therefore possible in many cases to replace bearing supports comprising a combination of radial and axial bearings by a single bearing, despite the high loads involved. This reduces, in some cases considerably, the costs and work required in the design of the adjacent construction and the fitting of bearings.

Slewing rings are sealed on both sides and lubricated with high-quality lubricating grease. They can be lubricated via lubrication nipples. The bearing rings are supplied without gear teeth or, in order to achieve simple drive solutions, are available with external or internal gear teeth. Customer-specific special solutions are also possible. INA slewing rings are available as single or double row four-point bearings as well as crossed roller bearings.

INA slewing ring
INA slewing ring
Advantages:
  • High load carrying capacity and rigidity
  • Very cost-effective
  • Extremely versatile
  • Easy to fit

INA radial insert ball bearings and housing units

Depending on the power plant involved, radial insert ball bearings and housing units of cast iron, sheet steel and plastic are used to support the elevation axis in single-axis tracking systems. These bearings are available in various designs with anti-corrosion protection, for example with Corrotect® coating. INA radial insert ball bearings and housing units are filled with lithium soap grease that is especially resistant to corrosion and aging. They are also available with square and hexagonal bores. To make the mounting process easier, split housings are also available that can also be used with various plain bearing types.

INA radial insert ball bearing and housing unit
INA radial insert ball bearing and housing unit
Advantages:
  • Particularly economical - without engineering compromises
  • Easy to fit
  • Robust and reliable
  • Prevention of shaft misalignment due to self-alignment facility

INA track rollers

INA track rollers are used on the rail systems for adjusting the azimuth axis of solar modules or for swiveling the parabolic mirrors. They are used in photovoltaic, Stirling and solar tower power plants. The rollers are designed as needle roller bearings, ball bearings or plain bearings. These bearings can also support high radial forces and axial forces in both directions. Our INA track roller range comprises more than 3,000 basic designs for all current applications.

INA track roller
INA track roller
Advantages:
  • Compact and small design
  • Reliable and resistant to wear
  • Low maintenance or maintenance-free

Above all, the technical superiority of INA track rollers compared with conventional components is due to the lower contact pressure.

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