A predictive life tool for case-carburized railcar tapered roller bearings, called the Service Load Factor (SLF), makes use of residual stress and retained austenite data to assess the condition of bearings as a result of service history. It is well known that the interaction between retained austenite transformation and the development of residual stresses are primary factors contributing to cone bore growth and decreased resistance to raceway spalling. This paper attempts to quantify these changes throughout the life of a bearing to provide insight into the predicted remaining service life of the bearing. Also, this paper will cover the use of the SLF as a failure analysis tool in order to quantify bearing damage due to shifted lading or worn adapters.

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