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The self-aligning ball bearing was invented by SKF. It has two rows of balls and a common concave sphered raceway in the outer ring. The bearing is consequently self-aligning and insensitive to angular misalignments of the shaft relative to the housing. It is particularly suitable for applications where considerable shaft deflections or misalignment are to be expected.
Additionally, the self-aligning ball bearing has the lowest friction of all rolling bearings, which enables it to run cooler even at high speeds.
SKF produces self-aligning ball bearings to several designs. These are:
– Open bearings of the basic design (fig. 1).
– Sealed bearings (fig. 2).
– Open bearings with an extended inner ring (fig. 3).