Vibration occur in all rotating machines and are often unwanted or even disturbing. Passive countermeasures such as vibration isolation using springs and dampers offer only limited performance and introduce unwanted weight. For this reason, we research systems for active vibration control, which outperform purely passive methods by far.
A research topic is the active rotor bearing, which aims to replace the squeeze film damper. Using piezoelectric actuated roller bearings it is possible to reduce unbalance induced rotor vibration and forces to a very low level. This enables quieter machines as well as increased bearing life. The use of mechatronic system unlocks additional potential. The actuating elements and the sensors of active bearings support easy implementation of fault diagnostics and fault detection.
Another research topic at IMS is an active vibration reduction for high-speed planetary gearboxes. Future geared turbofan engines will achieve significant increase in efficiency. Active vibration reduction allows further optimization of the planetary gearbox design. It introduces new degrees of freedom into the design space, by which the conflict between quiet operation and efficiency may be resolved.