Development Partner for High-efficiency Oil-less Turbo Compressor

Request Number REQ7367167
Due Date March 6, 2018
Request for Proposal Details
RFP Title
Development Partner for High-efficiency Oil-less Turbo Compressor
RFP Description

NineSigma, representing a multibillion-dollar global manufacturer, seeks development partners in element technologies for practical use of the highly efficient oil-less turbo compressor. The client assumes specific examples of the element technologies, including a shock wave suppression technology which is required on impellers or diffusers, etc. and a fluid bearing technology enabling high-speed rotation that can be applied to the compressor.



Our client, a global manufacturer, is developing more efficient air-conditioning technology, because of the recent growing interest in environmental issues.


For practical use of such an air-conditioning technology, the company has started to develop an oil-less turbo compressor, but there are many issues to be addressed regarding how to respond to shock waves owing to supersonic parts generated in the flow path of the compressor during high-speed operation, and the bearing technology that can be used for the high-speed operation.


Therefore, the client has issued this open request in order to enable practical use of these technologies as early as possible.


Key Success Criteria

Specifications of oil-less turbo compressor with the final aim of practical use

  • Fluids: R410A, R32, natural refrigerant, etc.
  • Compression ratio: Approx. 10 (multi-stage compression included)
  • Pressure/ temperature
    • Inlet: 0.2 to 2.0 MPa, -30 to 40 °C
    • Outlet: 0.8 to 4.4 MPa, Max 130 °C
  • Flow rate: 600 to 5,000 cm3/s
  • Rotation speed: 0 to 200,000 rpm
  • Weight: Approx. 5 kg


Technology required for practical use of the oil-less turbo compressor described above

  • Particularly in high-speed operation, the supersonic zone expands in the flow path (impellers, and diffusers, etc.) of the compressor, generating shock waves. Technology capable of alleviating and suppressing such shock waves causing an increase in losses.
  • Bearing technology capable of withstanding high-speed operation (MAX 200,000 rpm) of the turbo compressor described above.
    • Oil-less
    • Withstand maximum pressure of 0.5 MPa on a radial loading surface
    • Avoidance of contact between the shaft and the bearing even under the following conditions
      • On start-up and service interruption of system
      • Surge area (unstable areas occurring on small flow rate sides)


Although a proposal for both a technology for alleviating/suppressing shock waves and the bearing technology is preferable, a proposal for either of them is also acceptable.


Considering the higher requirement described above, we welcome proposals for a prototype-level technology that can be established with additional development of about two to three years, even if it does not meet the requirements at the present time.


Anticipated Project Phases or Project Plan

Respondents should submit proposals using the attached Response Template.


The client will review submitted proposals and possibly ask clarifying questions before selecting the most suitable candidates for collaboration. The client will select the best candidate(s) through evaluations. During the selection process, the client may execute non-disclosure agreements (NDA) with selected respondent(s), seek further information disclosure, and discuss specific development targets or potential opportunities.

The client will execute necessary agreement(s) with the selected respondent(s) and move to the advanced development phase. Specifics of any collaboration will be determined through consultation with the concerned parties.


Possible Approaches

Possible Approaches

Possible approaches might include, but are not limited to:

  • Technology for alleviating/suppressing shock waves
    • Optimization of the shape of blades and the angle distribution of blades of impellers
  • Innovative fluid bearing technology
    • Increase damping capacity against vibration to increase support performance of rotating shafts
    • Suppress deformation of bearings
      • Use materials with high thermal conductivity
      • Use materials with small thermal expansion coefficient
      • Insulate surfaces (sliding surfaces)
    • Suppress heat generation on bearings
      • Minimize surface roughness and waviness by high-precision machining
      • Improve wear resistance on surfaces (sliding surfaces)
      • Utilize phase change of fluids


Preferred Collaboration types
  • Joint Development
  • Contract Research
  • Technology Licensing
  • Supply Agreement
Items to be submitted

Items to be Submitted

Responses will use the Proposal Template and include the following items:


  • Types of the technology (Technology for alleviating or suppressing shock waves/ Bearing technology/ Both)
  • Outline of the technology (overview, features, principle)
  • Uniqueness of the technology
  • Development stage (Concept level / Performance evaluations at lab level/ Achieved practical use)
  • Current performance
    • For technology that alleviates or suppresses shock waves
      • Data on degree of alleviation/suppression of shock waves by proposed technique etc.
    •  For bearing technology
      • Rotation speed
      • Shaft diameter
      • Withstand load (surface pressure)
      • Durability
  • Issues to be solved and development plan to achieve the client’s anticipated goal
  • Past achievements (additional information that can confirm R&D capabilities, including research papers, patents, etc.)


Area of Interest
  • Consumer Products
Request Priority