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Structures Lab 1

Cantilever Beam Vibration Test

David Clark
Group 1
MAE 449 – Aerospace Laboratory
Abstract

The following exercise observes the lateral modes of vibration of a thin steel cantilever specimen.
Using accurate geometric and material properties, the natural frequency response for the cantilever
beam can be calculated. For the steel beam used in the experiment, the first natural response was
approximately 8.5 Hz. The experimental error experienced at low frequencies was as much as 50%,
however at high frequencies, the error was only 5%.

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Contents

Abstract .................................................................................................................................................. 2

Introduction and Background................................................................................................................. 4

Introduction........................................................................................................................................ 4

Equipment and Procedure ..................................................................................................................... 6

Equipment .......................................................................................................................................... 6

Experiment Setup ............................................................................................................................... 6

Basic Procedure .................................................................................................................................. 6

Data, Calculations, and Analysis ............................................................................................................. 6

Experimental Results and Error .............................................................................................................. 7

Discussion and Conclusions .................................................................................................................... 8

References ............................................................................................................................................ 10

MathCAD Work..................................................................................................................................... 10

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Introduction and Background

Introduction

The following laboratory procedure outlines a method for observing and measuring several
lateral modes of vibration of a thin steel cantilever specimen.
To study the vibration modes, an imaginary cut can be made through the cross section of a
cantilever beam. At this cutting plane, the reactions can be expressed as a shear force and a bending
moment under a simple point-load configuration. Using simple identities from intermediate mechanics
of materials, the displacement for any lateral section of the beam can be determined. Using calculus to
find the conditions at which these displacements are maximized, the natural frequencies for a specific
geometry with certain properties can be determined. More specifically, the natural frequency is
ultimately a function of the following parameters.
• E : The modulus of elasticity
• I : The moment of inertia perpendicular to the bending axis.
• ρ : A derived parameter representing the mass per unit length of the beam
• l : The length of the beam
For a simply supported beam, the following relation may be derived.
݀ସ ‫ݕ‬
− ߚସ‫ = ݕ‬0
݀‫ ݔ‬ସ
Equation 1

where the parameter ϐ represents


߱ଶ
ߚସ = ߩ
‫ܫܧ‬
Equation 2

Using boundary conditions and knowledge of solving differential equations, the solution can be
expressed using trigonometric expressions.
coshሺߚ݈ሻ cosሺߚ݈ሻ + 1 = 0

Equation 3

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This solution can now easily be solved numerically. The graph and table below visualizes the output
of equation 3, as well as solves for the values of ϐl.

Equation 3 Graphical Results


400
300
200
100
Result

0
-100 0 5 10 15 20

-200
-300
-400
ϐl

Figure 1

1.875103894221328
‫ ۍ‬4.694091132974175 ‫ې‬
‫ێ‬ ‫ۑ‬
7.854757438237613 ‫ۑ‬
ߚ݈ = ‫ێ‬ ‫݀ܽݎ‬
‫ێ‬10.995540734875467‫ۑ‬
‫ ێ‬14.13716839104647 ‫ۑ‬
‫ۏ‬17.278759532088237‫ے‬

Equation 4

Mode angle (βl) angle (βl)2 cosh(βl) cos(βl)


1 1.8751038942E+00 3.5160146141E+00 3.3374178330E+00 -2.9963262857E-01
2 4.6940911330E+00 2.2034491565E+01 5.4654287011E+01 -1.8296826374E-02
3 7.8547574382E+00 6.1697214414E+01 1.2889850544E+03 -7.7580418530E-04
4 1.0995540735E+01 1.2090191605E+02 2.9803870738E+04 -3.3552688870E-05
5 1.4137168391E+01 1.9985953012E+02 6.8970635290E+05 -1.4498923301E-06
6 1.7278759532E+01 2.9855553097E+02 1.5960258579E+07 -6.2655664442E-08

Mode cosh(βl) x cos(βl) cosh(βl) x cos(βl) + 1 ωn/ω1 fn/f1


1 -9.9999927793E-01 7.2206555923E-07 1.0000000000E+00 1.0000000000E+00
2 -1.0000000000E+00 -2.6223467842E-13 6.2668941921E+00 6.2668941921E+00
3 -1.0000000000E+00 3.3504310437E-12 1.7547485203E+01 1.7547485203E+01
4 -1.0000000020E+00 -2.0044048643E-09 3.4386067557E+01 3.4386067557E+01
5 -9.9999995109E-01 4.8913099682E-08 5.6842633507E+01 5.6842633507E+01
6 -1.0000006059E+00 -6.0591884488E-07 8.4913051774E+01 8.4913051774E+01
Table 1

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Equipment and Procedure

Equipment

The following experiment used the following equipment:


• Thin steel beam approximately 9” x 1” x 0.016”
• Piezoelectric material
• Variable electronic function generator
• Calipers / Ruler
• Cantilever fixture

Experiment Setup

The steel beam is secured by the cantilever fixture. The piezoelectric material is mounted on the
beam such that an electrical pulse may cause the beam to flex upon receiving a pulse from the wave
generator.

Basic Procedure

The electronic function generator is adjusted to output varying pulse outputs. The beam is
monitored as the range is adjusted. Upon outputting a natural frequency of the beam, the steel will flex
a noticeable amount at low frequencies. Adjusting the output between small ranges allows for the
discovery of a natural harmonic response. At higher frequencies, the arrival at a natural response will
cause the beam to emit audible noise.
The frequencies at which both phenomena occur are recorded as the experimental natural
frequencies.

Data, Calculations, and Analysis

The dimensions of the beam were measured as follows:


• Length, L = 9.125 inches, or 2.318x10-1 m
• Width, W = 1.206 inches, or 3.063x10-2 m
• Thickness, T = 0.41mm, or 4.1x10-4 m
The modulus of elasticity and density of steel are as follows:
• E = 2.034x1011 Pa

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• ρsteel = 7.85x103 kg/m3
The moment of inertia for the cross-sectional area perpendicular to the axis of bending, I, is
1 1
‫=ܫ‬ ܹ ܶଷ = ሺ3.063 × 10ିଶ ݉ሻሺ4.1 × 10ିସ ݉ሻଷ = 1.759 × 10ିଵଷ ݉ସ
12 12
Equation 5

The volume of the beam, which is used later to find the mass of the beam, can both be
expressed as
ܸ = ‫ = ܶ × ܹ × ܮ‬ሺ2.318 × 10ିଵ ݉ሻሺ3.063 × 10ିଵ ݉ሻሺ4.1 × 10ିସ ݉ሻ = 2.911 × 10ି଺ ݉ଷ

Equation 6

݇݃
݉ܽ‫ߩ = ݏݏ‬௦௧௘௘௟ ܸ = ൬7.85 × 10ଷ ൰ ሺ2.911 × 10ି଺ ݉ଷ ሻ = 2.285 × 10ିଶ ݇݃
݉ଷ
Equation 7

The derived parameter, ρ, is therefore


݉ܽ‫ ݏݏ‬2.285 × 10ିଶ ݇݃ ݇݃
ߩ= = = 0.099
‫ܮ‬ 2.318 × 10ିଵ ݉ ݉ଷ
Equation 8

The natural frequency, finally, can be found using the following equation.

‫ܫܧ‬
߱௡ = ሺߚ௡ ‫ܮ‬ሻଶ ඨ ସ
ߩ‫ܮ‬

Equation 9

Substituting the previous values into equation 8, the natural frequencies of the beam can be
expressed as
6.276
‫ۍ‬39.33‫ې‬
‫ێ‬ ‫ۑ‬
110.1‫ۑ‬
߱௡೟೓೐೚ೝ೐೟೔೎ೌ೗ =‫ێ‬ ‫ݖܪ‬
‫ێ‬215.8‫ۑ‬
‫ێ‬356.7‫ۑ‬
‫ۏ‬532.9‫ے‬

Equation 10

Experimental Results and Error

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The following frequencies were recorded as the natural frequencies using the experimental
procedure explained previously.
8.5
‫ ۍ‬23 ‫ې‬
‫ێ‬ ‫ۑ‬
130‫ۑ‬
߱௡ೌ೎೟ೠೌ೗ =‫ێ‬ ‫ݖܪ‬
‫ێ‬230‫ۑ‬
‫ێ‬370‫ۑ‬
‫ۏ‬560‫ے‬

Equation 11

35.4
‫ۍ‬41.5‫ې‬
ห߱௡೟೓೐೚ೝ೐೟೔೎ೌ೗ − ߱௡ೌ೎೟ೠೌ೗ ห ‫ێ‬18.0‫ۑ‬
‫= ݎ݋ݎݎܧ‬ =‫ێ‬ ‫ۑ‬%
߱௡೟೓೐೚ೝ೐೟೔೎ೌ೗ ‫ێ‬6.58‫ۑ‬
‫ێ‬3.72‫ۑ‬
‫ۏ‬5.09‫ے‬

Discussion and Conclusions

The table below catalogs the results.

Mode ftheory fexperimental fexpected ωtheory ωexperimental ωexpected


1 6.276 8.5 8.5 39.4 53.4 53.4
2 39.33 23 53.3 247.1 144.5 334.7
3 110.1 130 149.2 691.8 816.8 937.2
4 215.8 230 292.3 1355.9 1445.1 1836.5
5 356.7 370 483.2 2241.2 2324.8 3035.8
6 532.9 560 721.8 3348.3 3518.6 4535.0
Table 2

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Natural Frequency Modes
800

700

600
Frequency (Hz)

500

400 ftheory

300 fexperimental
fexpected
200

100

0
1 2 3 4 5 6
Mode

Figure 2

Natural Frequency (in rad/s)


5000
4500
4000
3500
Response (rad/s)

3000
2500 ωtheory
2000 ωexperimental
1500 ωexpected
1000
500
0
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Mode

Figure 3

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References

“Structures Lab 1 – Cantilever Beam Vibration Test.” Handout

MathCAD Work

The length of the beam


−1
L := 9.125in = 2.31775 × 10 m
−2
W := 1.206in = 3.0632 × 10 m
−4
T := 0.00041m = 4.1 × 10 m

Modulus of Elasticity for the beam


6 11
E := 29.5⋅ 10 psi = 2.034 × 10 Pa

Moment of inertia

1 3 − 13 4
I := ⋅ W⋅ T = 1.759 × 10 ⋅m
12

The density of steel


gm 3 kg
ρSteel := 7.85 = 7.85 × 10
3 3
cm m

The volume of the beam

−6 3
V := L⋅ W⋅ T = 2.911 × 10 ⋅m

The mass of the beam


−2
mass := ρSteel⋅ V = 2.285 × 10 kg

The parameter, ρ, which is mass per length

mass kg
ρlength := = 0.099
L m

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γ, which I will use for the right hand side of the natural frequency equation

E⋅ I 1
gam := = 11.215
4 s
ρlength⋅ L

The product of βl,

 1.875103894221328 
 4.694091132974175 
 
βl :=  7.854757438237613 
⋅ rad
 10.995540734875467 
 14.13716839104647 
 
 17.278759532088237 
The natural frequencies are, therefore...

 39.432 
 
 247.115 
 691.929 
ωnthrad := ( βl) ⋅ ( gam) =  3 ⋅
2 rad
 1.356 × 10  s
3
2.241 × 10
3
 3.348 × 10 

 6.276 
39.33

ωnth := ωnthrad⋅ 
1  110.124
= ⋅ Hz
 2⋅ π rad  215.799
356.731
 532.894 

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 8.5 
23
130
ωnexp := Hz
230
370
 560 

 35.442 
−41.52
ωnexp − ωnth 18.049
Error := = ⋅%
ωnth 6.581
3.72
 5.087 

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