Far-Eastern bearing business Coo Space has developed what it calls an Autonomous Decentralised Bearing, or in simple more exciting terms, a ball bearing system that delivers friction free rolling, minus the need for grease.
Delivering as much as ten times less friction over conventional designs, the clever system uses a dimple imprint in the bearing face to first slow then accelerate the bearing as they shoot around the case. The purpose of this is to create an artificial gap, negating the need for a retaining ring.
The science is all explained in the video below. In theory, this could be a breakthrough moment for both top-end applications where speed is of paramount importance, but also at the cheaper end of the scale. With less component parts, the system should be both easier and cheaper to produce.
Read more on Popular Science here.