Currently, the herringbone groove journal bearing (HGJB) has important applications in miniature rotating machines such as those found in the computer information storage industry. Grooves scribed on either the rotating or stationary member of the bearing pump the lubricating fluid inward thus generating support stiffness and improving its dynamic stability when operating concentrically. The narrow groove theory (NGT), traditionally adopted to model the concentric operation of these bearings, is limited to bearings with a large number of grooves. A finite element analysis is introduced for prediction of the static and rotordynamic forced response in HGJBs with finite numbers of grooves. Results from this analysis are then compared to available experimental data as well as to estimates from the NGT. A bearing geometry parametric study is then conducted to determine optimum rotordynamic force coefficients. A discussion on the temporal variation of the bearing reaction forces and force coefficients for a rotating journal with a small number of grooves is also presented. These changes can be significant at high operating eccentricities, possibly inducing a parametric excitation in rotating systems employing this type of bearing.

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