A significant advantage of foil journal bearings is their superior dynamic performance in rotor systems. However, the evaluation of their dynamic characteristics is still not enough because of the mechanical complexity of the foil structure and the strong nonlinear behavior of friction force. This work presents a nonlinear transient analysis method to predict dynamic performance of foil bearings considering Coulomb friction. In this method, the time dependent Reynolds equation is used to calculate pressure distribution and a finite element method is used to model the bump foil structure. Using this method, the hysteretic behavior of bump foil resulting from the unbalance excitation is observed. And, a number of parametric studies are performed to evaluate effects of design parameters on the unbalance response. The parameters are friction coefficient, bump half wavelength, amount of mass unbalance and number of bump foil strip.

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