Ethanol and sugar processing plant achieves big boost in MTBR with SKF CARB

The challenge

SKF CARB for sugar processing technology
An ethanol and sugar processing plant was experiencing reduced bearing service life in a cane shredder. The cause? The shredder was equipped with two spherical roller bearings that routinely endured temperatures of 50°- 60°C. This particular piece of sugar processing technology also endured heavy loads, induced axial forces, and running speeds of 650-700 rpm -- all in a very contaminated environment. In order to maintain reliable operation during sugar processing season, preventive bearings replacements were done as soon as wear was apparent.

The SKF solution

SKF recommended replacing the existing non-locating bearing with a CARB bearing, while keeping the locating spherical roller bearing in the other position.

The result

Mean Time Between Repairs (MTBR) increased dramatically over the 49 months experienced with the previous bearing arrangements. Following eight seasons, the CARB bearing solution was still operating trouble-free in the shredder. Even after 70 months the CARB bearing solutions was providing the sugar processor with a 43% increase in MTBR.

Condition monitoring of the CARB bearing positions was conducted during those eight seasons, revealing significant reductions in operating temperature and vibration levels. Combined with the elimination of internal axial forces, these reductions contributed to increased reliability, longer system life, reduced repositioning costs and other decreases in shredder processing maintenance expenses.

Summary over 70 months
  • Increased MTBR by 43%, from 49 to 70 months
  • Value of increased MTBR: €216 000
Note: All numbers are rounded off and based on customer estimates. Your particular cost savings may vary.
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