This paper presents a finite element method for the study of gas-lubricated bearings. The fluid is assumed to be compressible, and the effect of the molecular mean free path has been incorporated into the formulation. A variational statement for the governing equation is derived and used to formulate a non-linear quadrilateral finite element that has been incorporated into a standard code (MSC/NASTRAN). This constitutes a useful analysis tool for designers, especially in cases of complex bearing geometry. The results obtained with this method agree well with analytical solutions obtained by other authors for simple geometric configurations.
Bock, T.L., Arturo Cifuentes, and R.N. Coppolino. "Finite Element Method for Gas-Lubricated Bearings." Engineering Computations 7, no. 1 (March 1990): 32-36.
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