General motions of discs and shafts of large rotary machines appear with highly nonlinear behavior. The geometries of the shafts and the supporting systems of this machine can all be treated as nonlinear. This paper aims to investigate the chaos properties of the nonlinear rotating system. The nonlinear dynamic governing equations of the rotating bearing system are derived. The geometric nonlinearity of the shaft, nonlinear hydrostatic forces of the bearings, mass of the shaft and disc, deformation of the shaft and a disc mounted on the shaft, and the viscoelasticity of the supports are all taken into account. Numerical simulations are performed in the research for studying the bifurcation and chaos properties of the specified nonlinear rotating system. The effects of the shaft’s rotating speed and the mass eccentricity of the disc on the nonlinear dynamic properties of the system are investigated in detail. The results show that abundant of bifurcations and chaos exist in this nonlinear rotating system Corresponding to certain parameter values. The bifurcations and chaotic phenomena should be avoided when designing the rotating system by adjusting the design parameters. The results of this research can hereby be used for guiding the design and operation of rotor-bearing systems.

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