The Gear Research Institute is a non profit corporation registered in the state of Illinois. It has contracted with the Applied Research Laboratory of The Pennsylvania State University to conduct its activities, as a sponsor within the Drivetrain Technology Center. The Gear Research Institute is equipped with extensive research capabilities. These include rolling contact fatigue (RCF) testers for low- and high-temperature roller testing, power circulating (PC) gear testers for parallel axis gears with a 4-inch center distance (testers can be modified to accommodate other center distances), single tooth fatigue (STF) testers for spur and helical gears, gear tooth impact tester, and worm gear testers with 1.75 and 4-inch center distances. Extensive metallurgical characterization facilities are also available at Penn State in support of the Gear Research Institute. Below are examples of several of our test rigs. If you would like further details on our testing capabilities please go to the Drivetrain Technology Center website.
Power Circulating 4.0' CD Gear Fatigue Test Rig
This test rig design is capable of running an 18 tooth, 6 DP, 3.0" PD, 0.563" face width spur gear. Gear sped may range from 900 to 1500 rpm. Maximum tooth load up to 4600 lbs of tangential load. Contact stress can go up to 450 ksi using crowned mating gears. By modifying the bearing bars, other center distances can be accommodated and even helical gears can be tested for wear and contact fatigue.
Rolling Contact Fatigue Tester
GRI has seven of these design test rigs. Each is capable of running a 1.0" diameter by 4.89" long cylinder. Load rollers may be as large as 5.0" diameter by 0.5" width cylinders. This rig can test speeds of 1300 and 3000 rpm. Loads of 475 ksi contact stress may be attained with standard load rollers. By varying the gear ratio between the load rollers and test specimens, different amounts of sliding can be introduced in the test. Rolling/sliding tests can also be conducted up to temperatures of 400°F.
Gear Single Tooth Bending Fatigue Test Rig
This bending fatigue rig can run a 34 tooth, 6 DP, 5.667" PD, 1.0" wide spur gear. Testing frequency can reach 25 hertz with tooth loads up to 55, 000 lbs. Utilizing different fixtures, a large variety of spur, helical, bevel, and face gears can be tested for bending fatigue.