Prototyping of palm top size micro gas turbine shaft system supported by foil bearings and the evaluation of dynamic characteristics

Shlgehiko Kaneko*, Yoshihlro Miyano, Yuji Mori, Tatsuo Watanabe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


In recent years, micro gas turbines (MGT) of 100kW or less are drawing close attention as power generators equipped with cogeneration features. Aerodynamic foil bearings are considered to be the best candidate for the MGT due to its ease of maintenance. However, the details of bearing design guidelines have not been clarified though this technology is used in auxiliary power units (APU) for aircraft units. Firstly, we designed and manufactured radial foil bearings for the rotor manufactured from commercially available turbochargers. The diameter of the rotor is 20mm and the surface of the rotor is coated by ceramic. The radial bearing used here is composed of two elements; i.e. a housing and a multi wounded foil with projections of hemisphere on one side in the adequate interval. The bearing radial clearance between the rotor surface and the foil is 20m. In the experiment, we measured rotational speed and vibrations of the rotor in the radial and axial directions. Subsequently, analyses for the evaluation of first natural frequencies corresponding to lateral, conical and the first bending mode were introduced. Finally, the method for predicting the onset whirl rotational speed based on simple measurement is explained.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-234
Number of pages8
JournalNihon Enerugi Gakkaishi/Journal of the Japan Institute of Energy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Mar 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Damping
  • Foil bearing
  • Micro gas turbine
  • Natural frequencies
  • Rotor dynamics
  • Whirl

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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