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2020 / 2021 Edition

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SKF open state-of-the-art technology centre

Prof. Piet Lugt

University of Twente and SKF combine research expertise to drive advances in grease lubrication

SKF and the Dutch University of Twente, who have collaborated for more than 30 years, have launched a dedicated SKF University Technology Centre (UTC) for grease lubrication in rolling bearings.

‘Around 80% of industrial bearings are grease-lubricated,’ said Prof. Piet Lugt, SKF’s senior scientist. ‘There are clear benefits to be gained from a greater understanding of the characteristics and behaviour of lubricant greases and their application.’

Professor Lugt has been a part-time professor at the University of Twente since 2011, where his teaching and research focus on bearing failure mechanisms and life prediction – two key areas which are central to helping bearing users to get a better performance from their machinery. He has won a number of academic and industry awards and is author of the definitive book Grease Lubrication in Rolling Bearings (Wiley & Sons, 2013).

The University of Twente’s Prof. Dik Schipper, who will act as UTC director, commented: ‘Research at the University of Twente in recent years has increased our understanding of the role of grease in bearings. With this knowledge we can reduce energy losses and increase the lifetime of grease-lubricated contacts, contributing to a more sustainable society.’

Prof. Lugt added: ‘Bearings often operate in tough environments and combined with varying speeds and loads, extra demands are placed on the grease. By understanding how the environment affects the grease in our customer’s machines, we can make them run longer.’

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