The classical differential equations of motion of the ball mass center in an angular contact thrust loaded ball bearing are integrated with prescribed initial conditions in order to simulate the natural high frequency vibrational characteristics of the general motion. Two distinct frequencies are identified in the analytical simulation and their existence is also confirmed experimentally. One of the frequencies is found to be associated with the Hertzian contact spring at the ball race contact and it is therefore defined as the “elastic contact frequency”, Ωe. The other dominant frequency corresponding to oscillatory motion of the ball in the raceway groove appears to be kinematic in nature and it is, therefore, termed as the “bearing kinematic frequency”, Ωk. It is shown that for a given bearing Ωe and Ωk, vary as, respectively, 1/6 and 1/2 powers of the ball contact load and, therefore, for a given load these frequencies correspond to the natural frequencies of the bearing as applied in any vibrational analysis or simulation.

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