This paper describes an experimental investigation into the dynamic characteristics of corrugated foil (bump foil) strips used in compliant surface foil thrust bearings. This study provided the first opportunity to quantify the dynamic structural stiffness and equivalent damping coefficients of bump foil strips for a wide range of operating conditions. The experimental data were compared to results obtained by a theoretical model developed earlier. The effects of bearing design parameters, such as static loads, dynamic displacement amplitudes, bump configurations, pivot locations, surface coatings, and lubricant were also evaluated. An understanding of the dynamic characteristics of bump foil strips resulting from this work offers designers a means for enhancing the design of high-performance compliant foil bearings.

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