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Fatigue life testing of large tapered roller bearings for railroad applications is both expensive and time consuming. Accepted methods for testing bearings include full–size and scaled down testing. Currently, bearing test methods at Brenco take up to six months to complete, and scaled down testing requires additional resources for manufacturing prototypes and testing capabilities that are not economically ideal. The purpose of this project is the development of a tapered roller bearing test rig to test bearings to their fatigue life as quickly as possible. The rig design can accommodate bearing sizes in the range of one half (½) to a maximum of four (4) Class K, 6 ½ x 9 inch double row tapered roller bearings in line with an axial load. This Senior Design team developed an accelerated life test rig capable of testing up to four (4) full size bearings, which will cut the current analysis time in half. The development of this rig will allow Brenco to perform more efficient and effective testing of bearing life, which in turn will enhance research methods for determining better quality materials and suppliers.

Publication Date



mechanical and nuclear engineering, roller bearings


Engineering | Mechanical Engineering | Nuclear Engineering

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Charles Cartin

VCU Capstone Design Expo Posters


© The Author(s)

Date of Submission

August 2015

Tapered Roller Bearing Accelerated Fatigue Life Test Rig Design