A tunable magneto-rheological fluid-filled beam-like vibration absorber
Tuned vibration absorbers (TVAs) are often used to suppress unwanted vibrations. If the excitation frequency is time harmonic but the frequency changes with time, it is desirable to retune the TVA so that the natural frequency of the TVA always coincides with the excitation frequency. One way of achieving this is to adjust the stiffness of the TVA. The key challenge is to change the stiffness quickly in real time. In this paper a magneto-rheological (MR) fluid in its pre-yield state is used as the core of a three-layer beam-like TVA. The shear stiffness of the MR fluid is adjusted by varying the magnetic field to which it is exposed by changing the current supplied to the electromagnets. Hence the stiffness of the TVA can be varied. The vibration characteristics of the TVA as a function of the magnetic field strength are predicted using a finite element model together with an empirical model for the shear modulus of the MR fluid and a model for the magnetic field applied to the fluid. An MR fluid-filled TVA was manufactured and tested to validate the predictions. This TVA design allows the natural frequency to be changed by about 40%.