Main energy conversion machinery used and to be used in cogeneration systems are schematically described. Some assets of the distributed generation are pointed out and small-scale cogeneration systems designed for energy units of distributed cogeneration are described. In the small scale, turbines and bearings are a source of specific problems connected with securing stable rotor operation. Accepted has been two kinds of high speed micro-turbines of electric power about 3 KW with multistage axial and radial rotors supported on foil bearings. A concept which becomes more and more attractive takes into account a low-boiling agent, which is normally used in the thermal cycle of the micro-turbine, as the lubricating liquid in the bearings (so-called ORC based systems). Of some importance is the operation of these machines at a low noise emission level, sine being parts of the household equipment they could disturb the calm of the residents. The scope of the present article is limited to the discussion of dynamic characteristics of the selected design. The properties of the rotor combined with slide bearings (foil bearings in this particular case) were taken under investigation. A combination of this type is a certain novelty since a typical modal analysis of such objects refers to a rotor itself. Analysing the dynamic state of the "home" power plants requires qualitatively novel research tools.
The considerations presented in the paper relate to one of the most intriguing phenomena, which is the development of oil whirls and oil whips in rotors with journal bearings. This eﬀect is sometimes referred to as ﬂutter, as its origin is in some relation to self-exciting vibrations of the system. Despite the fact that the ﬂutter has been an object of investigation in numerous research centres all over the world, its nature has not been suﬃciently recognized yet. The present paper delivers a description of particular phases of development of the hydrodynamic instability and proposes diagnostic determinants for this state. The object of investigations also included bearings with hybrid lubrication and siphon pockets in the oil gaps. The answer has been received to the question whether the self-exciting vibrations in rotating machines can be avoided, or reduced by means of additional oil supply having the form of siphon oil.
Electro-dynamic passive magnetic bearings are now viewed as a feasible option when looking for support for high-speed rotors. Nevertheless, because of the skew-symmetrical visco-elastic properties of such bearings, they are prone to operational instability. In order to avoid this, the paper proposes the addition of external damping into the newly designed vibrating laboratory rotor-shaft system. This may be achieved by means of using simple passive dampers that would be found among the components of the electro-dynamic bearing housings along with magnetic dampers, which satisfy the operational principles of active magnetic bearings. Theoretical investigations are going to be conducted by means of a structural computer model of the rotor-shaft under construction, which will take into consideration its actual dimensions and material properties. The additional damping magnitudes required to stabilize the most sensitive lateral eigenmodes of the object under consideration have been determined by means of the Routh-Hurwitz stability criterion.