The Timken Company (NYSE:TKR) announced today that it is the sole authorized supplier of tapered roller bearings for the axle-riding final drives used to transmit power to the wheels of some of Europe’s fastest trains.
The new Siemens Velaro E high-speed train is capable of achieving speeds up to 217 miles per hour on the Madrid to Barcelona route of Spain’s national railway. German drive manufacturer Voith Turbo GmbH & Co. KG developed the SE-380 final drive for the Velaro E with both performance and passenger comfort in mind.
On the Velaro E, the drives are located directly below the passenger area. For this reason, noise reduction was a critical design objective. Voith made changes in the gearing and housing design and sought a new bearing concept.
Voith turned to Timken for help in designing a bearing for the output shaft of the drive that would support performance needs while being more compact and economical than the previous cylindrical roller bearing design used on some high-speed trains. Timken engineers designed tapered roller bearings capable of meeting the special design requirements and compatible with the extremely high travel speeds.
“We applied our knowledge of friction management and power transmission to take a proven bearing design and developed it further to improve the train’s performance, lowering weight and enhancing the passenger experience by reducing noise," said Mat Happach, vice-president – rail for Timken.
Timken has been developing and manufacturing products for the rail industry since the early 1930s. Its products are found on passenger and freight lines around the world.
About Voith Turbo
Voith Turbo, a group division of Voith AG, manufactures drive systems that safely, reliably and comfortably propel machinery and vehicles on land and at sea, save energy and reduce emissions. Voith AG employs over 24,000 people at more than 200 locations in its paper, drive and energy technology and industrial services business segments. The company generates annual sales of some $4.1 billion.
About The Timken Company
The Timken Company (NYSE: TKR, http://www.timken.com) keeps the world turning, with innovative friction management and power transmission products and services that enable customers to perform faster and more smoothly and efficiently. With sales of $5.0 billion in 2006, operations in 26 countries and approximately 25,000 employees, Timken is Where You Turn™ for better performance.