Large wind turbines are enormous machines. Many 2 megawatt class turbines are now being built with blades of around 40 meters in length, and a rotor hub height of 60 to 100 meters. The total weight is over 200 tons. Therefore, the bearings used in wind turbines are very large, with bore diameters of between 100 mm and 700 mm, and even as much as 2 meters in some instances.
Very few manufacturers worldwide, including NSK, can offer the market a stable supply of such large bearings. Suppliers must have both production capability and the ability to provide sales and technical service in key locations around the world; because the wind-turbine industry is now developing on a global scale.
NSK entered the market in the second half of 1990's, supplying the European wind turbine industry. At that time, European companies had a monopoly in the market. NSK currently also supplies bearings to the United States, China, India and elsewhere.
NSK is well known as one of the best bearing suppliers, and currently with NSK bearings used by nine of the world's top ten wind turbine manufacturers, the company is making a substantial contribution to environmental protection.
NSK Experience & Technology
Customers demand high reliability in bearings for wind turbines, This is because wind turbines have a design life of 20 years, and it is no easy matter to repair parts in the event of a problem. (Bearings are located several tens of meters above the ground.) For this reason, bearings must be designed using advanced computer simulation with a deep knowledge of materials and heat treatment. In addition, sometimes test evaluations are requested using actual size bearings. For all the above, NSK has top class ability among bearing manufacturers, and the company continues to respond to the expectations of the market by ensuring the constant evolution of these abilities.