The rotational speed requirements of high speed spindles led to the development of angular contact hybrid bearings with ceramic balls and PVD coated steel races. The present paper describes the determination and verification of critical coating fatigue stresses as well as their application in coating fatigue calculations of hybrid bearing steel races. The fatigue limits of low temperature deposited PVD coatings were determined by the application of the impact test and its FEM simulation and validated through their successful application to the prediction of coating life in rolling contact fatigue tests of coated specimens. Furthermore, a computer program that performs the quasi-static simulation of bearing operation yields the necessary kinematic and dynamic parameters for a FEM simulation of the stress field occurring in coated rings. For the investigated bearings, an adequate fatigue performance of their coated races was computationally exhibited. The PVD coated hybrid bearings illustrated the predicted behavior in long duration tests, conducted in full scale test rigs.

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