Timken returning to space aboard next-gen satellite
Jun 8, 2020

We’re heading back into orbit. When NASA launches the James Webb Space Telescope in 2021, it will be equipped with customized Timken precision bearings.

The Webb Telescope will be the largest and most powerful in space. In fact, it’s 100 times more powerful than its predecessor, the Hubble Telescope. Also, the Webb Telescope will orbit the sun, which will allow us to see perspectives from about a million miles away.

Our bearings will be critical to the telescope’s performance. These aren’t any ordinary bearings. They’re designed specifically to withstand the harsh conditions they’ll encounter in space. Specifically, they’ll be used in the pointing mechanism that perfectly positions the telescope to transmit data back to earth. In other words, our bearings will help us see what the satellite is seeing.

This collaboration is the latest example of our work with NASA, which dates to the very beginning of the U.S space program with Project Mercury in 1958. The goal of that effort was to send an astronaut safely into orbit and return him to earth.

Recently, I spoke with the Canton Repository about our work with NASA on the Webb Telescope and our long history of collaboration with the space agency. You can read it here.

Wayne V. Denny, Jr. is general manager of strategic marketing for The Timken Company. Named to this position in 2015, Denny is responsible for driving marketing strategy and developing actionable market plans for precision industries, including Aerospace, Medical, Machine Tool and Automation.