Localisation of copper-based bushings
The CSIR powder metallurgy team has been performing research and development (R&D) work in the manufacture of bushings/bearings through powder metallurgy. The aim of the R&D has been to determine the supply chain of the powders required, and the optimal processing parameters that result in repeatable products with the same properties as the imported counterparts.
The CSIR, in partnership with Metals Innovations (Pty) Ltd, locally manufactured oil-impregnated copper-based bushings that conform to international standards, notably the ASTM B438 Powdered Metal Bronze Sleeve Bearing Oil Impregnated Bronze, as well as equivalent international standards, including the MPIF, SAE 841, Mil-B-5687 and AMS 4805.
Oil-impregnated copper-based bushings are intended to preserve and extend the lifespan of machinery in various industries by reducing friction and wear. They are found in agricultural machines such as tractors, vacuum cleaners and washing machines; food industry equipment such as that used for food preparation; textile industry equipment such as that used for making yarns; medical equipment such as that used in surgical and medical apparatus; and electrical machines such as motors used in automobiles.
The copper-based bushings developed at the CSIR are solid and hollow plain, and flanged oil-impregnated bushings, and they can be produced to standardised and customised dimensions.
Prototypes of bushings were produced and exhibited at the NAACAM Show.
Dr Miemie Maminza