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Bearing Life

The market for bearings is growing, particularly for use in high-accuracy machinery in the pharmaceutical industry. This article explains the impact of radial and thrust forces and what engineers can do to match the right bearing to the load.

The global market for bearings was valued at US $81.6 billion in 2015 and is expected to grow to $172.2 billion by 2025, according to a report by Grand View Research (1). One of the fastest growing subsectors is the miniature ball bearing market − featuring small and miniature bearings with an interior diameter of 9mm or smaller − which is forecast to reach a market value of $2.3 billion by 2026 and expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 9% in terms of revenue from 2018-2026 (2).

One key trend is a demand for bearings that can handle the unique challenges posed by chemical and pharma manufacturing and packaging, while still delivering high levels of accuracy, smoothness, and equipment life.

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Chris Johnson is Managing Director at SMB Bearings. The Oxfordshire-based company specialises in the supply and relubrication of miniature bearings. Chris has managed operations at the company for over eight years and has made a conscious effort to make it a specialist in miniature, corrosion-resistant, and thin-section bearings. 
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