Plant & Works Engineering
Fourth generation power transmission
Published:  20 August, 2021

Fourth generation power transmissionPowerGrip GT4 ™ is Gates' synchronous elastomer belt  reported to have the highest power transmission capacity on the market in its class. But this is not the only feature of this new belt from Gates, a world leader in the supply of specific hydraulic and power transmission solutions. Using new advanced materials, Gates has designed a belt with higher chemical resistance and resistance to a wider temperature range. The new GT4 ™ belt offers improved performance for a wide range of industrial applications.


The new PowerGrip GT4 ™ belt is the result of a new step in a product with a long history. Born in 1990 with 5 tooth pitches (2, 3, 5, 8 and 14 mm), Gates GT belts have undergone continuous improvements over time increasing their transmissible power. The 8 & 14 mm ranges were first modified in 2000, gaining 30% more power than the previous model and becoming GT2. In 2006, a further step was taken to make them 10% more powerful, becoming GT3. Finally, with the current modifications, they have acquired 25% more for the 14mm and 30% more for the 8mm, becoming the GT4. This latest version benefits from numerous innovations that give it special performance.

New materials, new power

In contrast to many elastomer synchronous belts currently on the market, which are made of chloroprene, this belt is made of a new material, namely ethylene elastomer (EE). This material gives the belt greater strength and, above all, extends its range of use. The GT4 operates at temperatures between -40°C and 120°C, with intermittent use possible up to 140°C. For comparison: the GT3 analogue operates between -30°C and 100°C. Thanks to the wider temperature range, it is also possible to extend the application areas of the belt into sectors where it was previously not possible to use it. The material also brings environmental benefits as it does not contain halogenated molecules, such as chlorine.

A belt with many advantages

By being able to transmit higher power, the GT4 ™ can be used as a replacement for chains. What does this mean? Firstly, less maintenance: while chains require regular lubrication, this is not necessary for belts, which also require less tension readjustment. The absence of oil, and the lower mass of this belt compared to chains and previous versions, improves working conditions for employees, making it easier to handle and eliminates the risk of slipping or falling, often caused by the presence of oil on the walkways.

The new material provides greater chemical resistance to alkalis, acids, UV and ozone, and its performance is guaranteed in all environments except those in which it is totally immersed in oil and grease, although intermittent contact with oils and greases does not adversely affect its performance.

Not only the material of the GT4 ™ belt has been improved, but also all its other components:

- The tensile cords are made of glass fibre which gives high length stability and increased fatigue strength. This in turn leads to an increase in the possible power output and an increase in the belt's service life.

- The teeth are impregnated with nylon. This reduces friction and provides better resistance to tooth wear. It also allows for the redistribution of electrical charges, making the belt ATEX compliant.

- The back finish eliminates vibrations and allows smooth operation of the outer pulley.

- The tooth profile is fully compatible with existing HTD pulleys.

Gates offers a complete range of PowerGrip GT4™ belts with tooth pitches of 8 mm and 14 mm and lengths up to 6.5 metres.

As distributors complete their offering with a range of higher performance belts, end-users, for their power transmission applications, will benefit from more capacitive belts, and a lower total cost of ownership. This improved performance with the PowerGrip GT4™, opens other market opportunities, such as the conversion of chain drives to high technology belt drives, which require significantly less maintenance.