Advanced air bearings have been applied to turbochargers, which brings out several benefits, including fast response, no oil leakage, low kick in speed, and low emissions.
The high performance turbocharger reduces response time from 2 to 0.8 second
As air bearings reduce friction to nearly zero, these turbochargers tend to run at a much higher speed than before. Faster than usual rotating speed implies the potential for the compressor and turbine being scaled down, which in turn further increases the speed. Therefore, an air bearing supported turbocharger needs to be redesigned to fit the compressor maps required by the engine. The centre has successfully downsized turbocharger compressors by 15% in diameter and the new compressor still covers the compressor map.