The amount of air flow required to operate an air bearing depends on three variables:
- The perimeter of the air bearing footprint
- The floor surface texture
- The amount of load carried by the air bearing.
When an air bearing is carrying its rated load and riding on an excellent floor surface, the required air consumption for good operation is 1 SCFM (standard cubic feet per minute) per foot of air bearing perimeter. An excellent floor surface is considered to have a smooth texture equivalent to sheet steel, smooth epoxy or machine troweled concrete with a polished finish. The surface is absent of any pits, cracks or other defects.
The required air consumption for good operation of an air bearing, carrying a capacity load on an average floor surface, is 3 SCFM per foot of perimeter. An average floor surface is considered to have a texture equivalent to that of steel plate with minor flaking of mill scale, good concrete with minor pit scratches and hairline cracks or epoxy with an “orange peel” texture.
The required air consumption for acceptable operation of an air bearing, carrying a capacity load on a slightly rough floor, is 5 SCFM per foot of perimeter. A slightly rough floor feels rough to the hand; however, it is much smoother than a broom-finished concrete texture. Broom-finished concrete is unacceptable for air bearing use.
The required air consumption for an air bearing is also proportional to the amount of load it is carrying. Therefore, an air bearing operating at half its rated capacity will require approximately half of the air flow required to operate at full capacity.
Click here for more information or call an Airfloat applications engineer at 800-888-0018.