CALL FOR PROPOSAL
If your company would like to join this research project, please contact the project coordinator info (at) feanor.com
Aim of the project is to facilitate use of face gears in aviation industry, through a new cost-effective manufacturing technology, based on shaping technology with a special software on CNC horizontal shaping machine
State of the art: face gears vs. bevel gears
Face gears have been known and studied for many years, and have been extensively used for low power and low speed. With the advent of high torque and speed requirements, face gears have been driven out by conventional bevel gears, which are easier to be manufactured.
Advantages of face gears for aircraft applications
Face gears can have important applications in transmissions of helicopters, especially for two reasons:
1. the face gear coupling proved to be effective also with insufficient lubrication, thus increasing the reliability of the aircraft
2. the face gear coupling works also with imperfect misalignment between pinion and the rotor gear
In case of damage of the gearbox, helicopters using transmission systems based on face gears have thus a higher safety and survivability.
General advantages of face gears
Face gears have some other natural advantages, compared to bevel gears, such as following:
1.the pinion is a normal spur gear which axial position has no influence on the meshing zone provided its face is adequate
2.assembly time is reduced because only the axial position of the face gears needs to be set
3.Lapping is not necessary because all gears irrespective of their tooth numbers or shaft angles may be interchangeably meshed with the common pinion upon which the particular generating hob geometry is based
4.There is no axial load on a pinion with straight spur teeth
5.The meshing is smoother due to oblique contact lines and high contact ratio
6.Face gears provide high transmission ratios in one stage
7.Cost effective manufacture on conventional CNC gear hobbing machines straddle mounted pinions, provided that the calculation is correct
8.Zero backlash transmission for positioning or measuring machines can be easily obtained
9.Face gears have high strength teeth and good contact geometry, which give high torque capability
Actual application in military aircrafts
Facegears are used in military helicopters, where higher manufacturing costs are driven out by need of helicopter reliability and survivability. As far as we know, face gears are not used on civil helicopters.
Potential benefits for partners
All the partners are involved in gear technology design (Feanor), gear manufacturing (A) and gear measuring (B), and will have benefit if the project will be completed.
Potential benefit for user of the new technology
Importance of face gears on aviation industry has been pointed out here, but all manufacturers of gearboxes and transmission are potentially interested in the possible applications of face gears (in automotive, building, steel processing, mills and wind-mills, …) if this technology will be succesful. It is impossible to evaluate impact on all these areas, but it is certainly impressive.
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