Selecting a suitable lubricant and lubrication method for a super-precision bearing arrangement depends primarily on the operating conditions such as the required speed or permissible operating temperature. However, other factors like vibration, loads and the lubrication of adjacent components, such as gears, can also influence the selection process.
To generate an adequate hydrodynamic film between the rolling elements and raceways, only a very small amount of lubricant is required. Therefore, using grease as a lubricant for spindle bearing arrangements is becoming increasingly popular. With a properly designed grease lubrication system, the hydrodynamic frictional losses are low and operating temperatures can be kept to a minimum. However, where speeds are very high, grease service life may be too short and oil lubrication may be required. Typically, oil lubrication is accomplished with an oil-air system or an oil circulation system which can also provide the added benefit of cooling.
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