Automotive Solutions

Hub Wheel Bearing: -

Though you may never even see it, a wheel hub bearing unit is an important part of your car's wheel assembly, enabling your wheels to turn freely and playing a crucial role in the safety and handling characteristics of your vehicle. The wheel hub acts as a mounting assembly for the wheels of a vehicle. The wheel bearings assist the wheels in turning smoothly. The wheel hub is also attached to the brake rotor. Basically, the function of the wheel hub is to keep the wheel spinning freely on the bearing while keeping it attached to the vehicle.

A core role in such bearings is taken by the steel balls which have to ensure both the smooth rotation and the proper resistance to fatigue along the entire life of the vehicle. NHB HUB balls have been designed in order to guarantee a fine metallurgical structure and a proper residual stress distribution that makes bearing life reliable and consistent. They are manufactured using clean chrome steel as per NHB 2 steel specification.

Furthermore, for the most demanding customer’s HUB applications NHB has recently developed a special “Long Life” specification that – with a minimal surcharge – ensures to statistically reach L10 lives from 3 to 4 times longer than standard HUB balls. (L10 life is the statistical duration of product under life testing at which there is 10% probability of product failure. Together with Weibull plot, it is globally used to assess the life span of products.)

Seat Belt: -

In a typical seatbelt system, the belt webbing is connected to a retractor mechanism. The central element in the retractor is a spool, which is attached to one end of the webbing. The retractor has a locking mechanism in terms of ball that stops the spool from rotating when the car is involved in a collision.In this way the system holds the passenger to the seat and saves the life.

NHB offer for such application consists of special passivized stainless steel balls that guarantee a reliable behaviour to the above retractor mechanism. The balls’ geometrical precision and thermal stability make the difference in the performance between NHB solution and competitors’ one.

As further product improvement, NHB is now able to offer to the market a new generation of balls made in aluminum that, through their lower density and a special surface treatment, shall provide a faster reaction compared to the traditional seat belt systems.

CV Joints: -

CV joints are basically intricate ball and socket joints.All front- wheel drive cars have Constant Velocity joints or CV joints on both ends of the drive shafts (half shafts). Inner CV joints connect the driving shafts to the transmission while the outer CV joints connect the drive shafts to the car's wheels.Despite the reduced number of revolutions and speed, CV joints play a very important role in the safety of the vehicle. Being subject to high loads along the operation, they have to reliably sustain it without failure that would result into passengers’ life risk.

To ensure the above safety function, NHB balls for CV application have been designed with chrome steel selection from few renowned manufacturers along with proper heat treatment process. Furthermore 100% of balls are deeply controlled by Eddy Current Testing to avoid any risk of even micro-cracks, overlaps and re-hardening.

Water pump Bearing: -

The water pump is the heart of the automotive cooling system, typically a belt-driven centrifugal pump. A water pump bearing is a ready-to- fit bearing unit. It comprises a shaft that is supported by means of several rows of balls in a through hardened outer ring. The unreliability of water pumps might compromise the functionality of the vehicle’s engine.

For this application NHB offers INQ and ESQ chrome steel balls, latter being characterized by superior geometrical precision for very smooth rotation. In both cases NHB heat treatment process ensures better thermal stability than standard balls for water pump bearings.

Transmission & other Automotive: -

Typical applications of automotive bearings include transmission, windshield wipers, convertible tops, pedals (???), clutch, engine components, and brake and seat recliner systems.

The most stressing application is represented by transmission bearings where high loads and solicitations to fatigue are present. For these reasons steel balls used in these bearings need to be manufactured with special care of residual compressive stress profiles, metallurgical structure, thermal stability and geometry according to G10 as per IS03290 norm. NHB is also able to offer the balls with better waviness and geometry (ESQ), with clean chrome steel as per NHB 2 specification.

Furthermore NHB has recently launched a new product designated “Long Life” that ensures higher resistance to fatigue and wear in transmission bearings, multiplying by 3 or 4 times the expected bearing life in the application.

Furthermore steel balls are also used in seat slide, electric brake, steering column and in … system for car door opening. NHB supplies balls also for all these applications. For electric vehicle application, please refer to Silent Bearing section.

Airbags :-

The airbag system is one of the most important parts of your vehicle's safety components. Airbags are stretchable fabrics or other materials that are tightly packed in various locations throughout your vehicle. Two types of airbag sensors used in cars are electrical and mechanical. Electrical sensors use an electromechanical "ball and tube" mechanism, which basically consists of a small tube containing a circuit switch and ball that's held together by a small magnet. If a collision occurs, the ball is dislodged from the magnet and rolls forward in the tube, hitting a switch that completes the electrical circuit.

NHB offers balls in stainless steel … for airbag application with geometry according to G100 or better as per ISO 3290 norm.