On February 18, 2021, another rover landed on the Red Planet. Its mission is to search for signs of ancient microbial life. The main role of TIMKEN bearings was in landing as they are located in the lowering brake. They supported the soft arrival of the equipment on the surface of the planet. These bearings were developed by John Renaud, a senior application engineer at TIMKEN, who, according to his boss, is also a bit of a specialist in spaceflight.
This was not TIMKEN’s first Martian project.
Previously, the Curiosity and the two previous rovers, the Spirit and the Opportunity, were also fitted with TIMKEN bearings. In addition to the brakes, the Curiosity’s internal system was also moved by TIMKEN bearings. With their help, it positioned the sample collection cup, which was used to collect and analyze rock and soil samples. Moreover, two 6.35 mm TIMKEN bearings operated its tiny vacuum pump, which supported the Martian’s analytical equipment.
Watch the video about TIMKEN bearings designed to work in space and read the whole article HERE!