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Correlation between Belt Natural Frequencies and Vibration Spectra

This tech-note is a continuation of the previous study. In the last tech-note, we reported the results of V-belt natural frequencies under different tensions and examined whether they follow string theory or beam theory. We learned that: 1. natural frequencies are function tension, 2. natural frequencies follow string theory in the sense that the higher modes are integral multiples of the fundamental, and 3. string theory overestimates the natural frequencies measured using a hammer test under medium to high tension; for low tension, it underestimates it. In this tech-note, we present the results of: 1. how the natural frequencies get excited for belts in differing lengths, 2. correlation between machine operating speed and natural frequency excitement, 3. whether natural frequencies show up in the vibration spectra, 4. belt dynamic stiffness versus static stiffness, and 5. belt length effect on excitation and RPM. Test Setup All tests were done on SpectraQuests Machinery Fault Simulator (MFS) using two A30 (30 inches long) and two A42 (42 inches long) belts. Data was acquired using SpectraQuests SpectraPad portable data acquisition system, and analysis was performed with VibraQuest software. Two single axis accelerometers and one tri-axial accelerometer made by IMI, and one Monarch strobe light were also used during the test. In order to eliminate effects of gearing mechanism, the belts were mounted directly on a block which was mounted on a sliding platform. The platform could be easily moved to adjust the belt tension.

Test Setup MFS with A42 Belt Mounted

To excite resonances in the belts, we tried to put tape on the upper sheave, and a metal ball was taped to each belt. But it did not excite the belt resonance frequency up to 5000 RPM. In the end, we had to tape two metal balls on the belts to excite the resonance within the speed range of operation.

Wrapped tape on the belt

Test Procedure 1. Install the 30-inch belts on to the machine. 2. Turn the screw to adjust the tension. 3. Do a running up test first by slowly increasing the motor speed, and try to locate the drive frequency at which the belts will enter resonance (vibration level is much higher).

Observe the transverse vibration level 4. Run the machine at the frequency we get from last step. 5. Collect steady state data, and use the strobe light to get the transverse vibration frequency, which is the natural frequency of the belt. 6. Repeat the above steps for other tensions. 7. Repeat the above steps for 42-inch belt.

Test Data and Analysis To detect the resonance frequency, startup and coast down data were collected, and strobe light was used to detect the resonance. Once the resonance frequency was determined, the MFS was operated under steady state conditions at those speeds. The following two tables provide summary of results. Each table contains data for MFS speed, belt speed (or Belt Pass Frequency), and strobe measured resonance frequencies. Table 1 illustrates 30-inch belt data, and Table 2 is for 42-inch belt data. Table 1 30-inch belt
Tension Low Medium High MFS Speed (Hz) Inner Belt Outer Belt 46.2 42.8 46.9 41.9 65.3 65.3 Belt Speed, BPF (Hz) Inner Belt Outer Belt 22.3 20.7 22.7 20.3 31.6 35.6 Resonance Frequency (Hz) Inner Belt Outer Belt 37.48 31.49 51.68 46.38 72.14 67.13

Graphs 1 and 2 illustrate MFS speed, belt speed, and resonance frequency for inner and outer belts at three different tensions respectively.
Comparison of MFS Speed, Belt Speed and Resonance Frequency, 30inch Inner Belt
80

70

60

Frequency (Hz)

50

40

MFS Speed (Hz) Belt Speed, BPS (Hz) Resonance Frequency (Hz)

30

20

10 Low Medium High

Tension

Graph 1

Comparison of MFS Speed, Belt Speed and Resonance Frequency, 30inch Outer Belt
70

60

50

Frequency (Hz)

40

MFS Speed (Hz) Belt Speed, BPS (Hz) Resonance Frequency (Hz)

30

20

10 Low Medium High

Tension

Graph 2 42-inch belt


Tension Low Medium MediumHigh Drive Frequency (Hz) Inner Belt Outer Belt 51.7 44.5 63 53 60 53.6 Belt Passing Frequency (Hz) Inner Belt Outer Belt 17.9 15.4 21.8 18.3 20.7 18.5 Resonance Frequency (Hz) Inner Belt Outer Belt 20.5 18 26 22 30.5 28.5

Graphs 3 and 4 illustrate MFS speed, belt speed, and resonance frequency for inner and outer belts at three different tensions respectively.

Comparison for MFS Speed, Belt Speed and Resonance Frequency, 42-inch Inner Belt
70

60

50

Frequency (Hz)

40

MFS Speed (Hz) Belt Speed, BPS (Hz) Resonance Frequency (Hz)

30

20

10 Low Medium Medium-High

Tension

Graph 3
Comparison of MFS Speed, Belt Speed and Resonance Frequency, 42inch Outer Belt
60 55 50 45

Frequency (Hz)

40 35 30 25 20 15 10 Low Medium Medium-High

MFS Speed (Hz) Belt Speed, BPS (Hz) Resonance Frequency (Hz)

Tension

Graph 4

It can be seen from the data that the belt resonance frequencies increase with tension. Higher speeds are required to excite the resonance at higher tensions. The ratio of resonance frequency and belt speed is not constant (varies from 1 to 2.5). The inner belt seems to have higher resonance frequencies indicating higher dynamic stiffness. And the excitation of resonance seems to be complicated. The following plot illustrates vibration spectra for 42 inch belt operating at steady state speed of 2532 RPM.

The belt vibration frequency is shown in spectrum 42-inch belt, low tension We can see the peaks at resonance frequency and the running speed. The data was collected on the bearing house in the vertical direction.

Conclusion
Natural frequency excitation It was not possible to excite the belt natural frequency with one defected spot. To excite the belt natural frequency, the defects have to be introduced to two locations on the belt. This indicates that the belt resonances are not easy to excite under normal low speed operation.

Detection of belt natural frequency from spectrum The relationship between belt natural frequency and machine speed is not very clear. If the belt frequency is excited, it can be detected from spectrum. But exceptions are also noted.

Relation between natural frequency excitation and tension The higher RPM was required to excite the belt natural frequency under higher tension. Difference of the belt properties Hammer test indicated small differences (about 5-10%), but the differences of natural frequencies under running condition were higher (about 10%-20%). This indicates that the dynamic stiffness changes with speed. The belt length effect Since the short belt has higher BPF, the natural frequency was excited at lower machine speed. The results of these studies are interesting, based as they are on experimental data obtained from using SpectraQuests Machinery Fault Simulator and data acquisition and analysis software. The study is not conclusive enough to make predictive models from the data. Further work will be performed to draw some solid conclusions.