Plastic plain bearing specialist igus has just launched its manus competition for the sixth time. The international competition has taken place every two years since its inception in 2003. The last contest, which ran in 2011, received over 300 entries from all over the world.
The manus competition seeks innovative and challenging applications that use self-lubricating, maintenance-free polymer bearings to improve technology and reduce costs. Winners will receive cash prizes totalling over 11,000 USD.
Machine safety is one area that can be improved by installing dry-running plastic bearings. According to a study from MIT, machine stoppages resulting from insufficient lubrication total up to 240 million dollars in the US alone. Today, metal bearings that require oil are frequently replaced by lubrication- and maintenance-free plastic bearings.
It’s easy to enter this year’s manus contest: The judging panel — comprising technology professors and editors-in-chief — require a short description of the polymer bearing application, an explanation of the problem the bearings solved, and accompanying photos or drawings.
Applications using all-plastic or plastic-compound bearings are permitted, but not applications that use bearings coated in plastic. Those interested can enter at http://www.igus.com/manus. Entries must be received by February 28, 2013.