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# 3 Vibration and noise

Introduction
Vibration is considered in this chapter with particular reference to the design and oper-
ation of engine test facilities, engine mountings and the isolation of engine-induced
disturbances. Torsional vibration is covered as a separate subject in Chapter 9, Cou-
pling the engine to the dynamometer.
The theory of noise generation and control is briefly considered and a brief account
given of the particular problems involved in the design of anechoic cells.
Vibration and noise
Almost always the engine itself is the only significant source of vibration and noise
in the engine test cell.
15
Secondary sources such as the ventilation system, pumps
and circulation systems or the dynamometer are usually swamped by the effects of
the engine.
There are several aspects to this problem:

The engine must be mounted in such a way that neither it nor connections to it
can be damaged by excessive movement or excessive constraint.

## Transmission of engine-induced vibration to the cell structure or to other buildings

must be controlled.

Excessive noise levels in the cell should be avoided or contained as far as possible
and the design of alarm signals should take in-cell noise levels into account.
Fundamentals: sources of vibration
Since the vast majority of engines likely to be encountered are single- or multi-
cylinder in-line vertical engines, we shall concentrate on this configuration.
An engine may be regarded as having six degrees of freedom of vibration about
orthogonal axes through its centre of gravity: linear vibrations along each axis and
rotations about each axis (see Fig. 3.1).
22 Engine Testing
Z
Z
X
X
Y
Y
Figure 3.1 Internal combustion engine: principle axes and degrees of freedom
In practice, only three of these modes are usually of importance:

## rotation about the Y axis due to cyclic variations in torque;

rotation about the Z axis due to unbalanced vertical forces in different transverse
planes.
Torque variations will be considered later. In general, the rotating masses are carefully
balanced but periodic forces due to the reciprocating masses cannot be avoided. The
crank, connecting rod and piston assembly shown in Fig. 3.2 is subject to a periodic
force in the line of action of the piston given approximately by:
f =m
p
w
2
c
r cos 0 +
m

w
2
c
r cos 20
n
where n =I,r (1)
m
f
I
r

## Figure 3.2 Connecting rod crank mechanism: unbalanced forces

Vibration and noise 23
Here m
p
represents the sum of the mass of the piston plus, by convention, one-third
of the mass of the connecting rod (the remaining two-thirds is usually regarded as
being concentrated at the crankpin centre).
The first term of eq. (1) represents the first-order inertia force. It is equivalent
to the component of centrifugal force on the line of action generated by a mass m
p
concentrated at the crankpin and rotating at engine speed. The second term arises
from the obliquity of the connecting rod and is equivalent to the component of force
in the line of action generated by a mass m/4n at the crankpin radius, but rotating at
twice engine speed.
Inertia forces of higher order (3, 4, etc., crankshaft speed) are also generated
but may usually be ignored.
It is possible to balance any desired proportion of the first-order inertia force
by balance weights on the crankshaft, but these then give rise to an equivalent
reciprocating force on the Z axis, which may be even more objectionable.
Inertia forces may be represented by vectors rotating at crankshaft speed and twice
crankshaft speed. Table 3.1 shows the first- and second-order vectors for engines
having from one to six cylinders.
Table 3.1 First- and second-order forces, multicylinder engines
First
order
forces
1
111
1 1 1
1 1
1
1
1 1 1
1 1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
3
3 3
3
3
3
3
5
5
5
5
5
6
6
6
6
5
5
5
3 3
3
3
3
3
3
2
2
2
2
2
3
3
3
3
4
4
4
5
5
6
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
4
2
2
2
Second
order
forces
First
order
couples
Second
order
couples
24 Engine Testing
Note the following features:

In a single cylinder engine, both first- and second-order forces are unbalanced.

## For larger numbers of cylinders, first-order forces are balanced.

For two and four cylinder engines, the second-order forces are unbalanced and
additive.
This last feature is an undesirable characteristic of a four cylinder engine and in some
cases has been eliminated by counter-rotating weights driven at twice crankshaft
speed.
The other consequence of reciprocating unbalance is the generation of rocking
couples about the transverse or Z axis and these are also shown in Fig. 3.1.

## In a five cylinder engine, there is a small first-order and a larger second-order

couple.
Six cylinder engines, which are well known for smooth running, are balanced in all
modes.
Variations in engine turning moment are discussed in Chapter 9, coupling the
engine to the dynamometer. These variations give rise to equal and opposite reactions
on the engine, which tend to cause rotation of the whole engine about the crankshaft
axis. The order of these disturbances, i.e. the ratio of the frequency of the disturbance
to the engine speed, is a function of the engine cycle and the number of cylinders.
For a four-stroke engine, the lowest order is equal to half the number of cylinders:
in a single cylinder there is a disturbing couple at half engine speed while in a six
cylinder engine the lowest disturbing frequency is at three times engine speed. In a
two-stroke engine, the lowest order is equal to the number of cylinders.
The design of engine mountings and test bed foundations
The main problem in engine mounting design is that of ensuring that the motions
of the engine and the forces transmitted to the surroundings as a result of the
unavoidable forces and couples briefly described above are kept to manageable
levels. In the case of vehicle engines it is sometimes the practice to make use of the
same flexible mounts and the same location points as in the vehicle; this does not,
however, guarantee a satisfactory solution. In the vehicle, the mountings are carried
on a comparatively light structure, while in the test cell they may be attached to a
massive pallet or even to a seismic block. Also in the test cell the engine may be
fitted with additional equipment and various service connections. All of these factors
alter the dynamics of the system when compared with the situation of the engine in
Vibration and noise 25
service and can give rise to fatigue failures of both the engine support brackets and
those of auxiliary devices, such as the alternator.
Truck diesel engines usually present less of a problem than small automotive
engines, as they generally have fairly massive and well-spaced supports at the fly-
wheel end. Stationary engines will in most cases be carried on four or more flexible
mountings in a single plane below the engine and the design of a suitable system is
a comparatively simple matter.
We shall consider the simplest case, an engine of mass m kg carried on undamped
mountings of combined stiffness k N/m (Fig. 3.3). The differential equation defining
the motion of the mass equates the force exerted by the mounting springs with the
acceleration of the mass:
md
2
x
dt
2
+kx =0 (2)
a solution is
x =cons tan t sin

k
m
t
k
m
=w
2
0
natural frequency =q
0
=
w
0
2r
=
1
2r

k
m
(3)
the static deflection under the force of gravity =mg/k which leads to a very convenient
expression for the natural frequency of vibration:
q
0
=
1
2r

g
static deflection
(4a)
C of G
Figure 3.3 Engine carried on four exible mountings
26 Engine Testing
or, if static deflection is in millimetres:

0
=
1576

static deflection
(4b)
This relationship is plotted in Fig. 3.4
Next, consider the case where the mass m is subjected to an exciting force of
amplitude f and frequency w/2r. The equation of motion now reads:
m
J
2
x
Jt
2
+kx =] sin wt
the solution includes a transient element; for the steady state condition amplitude of
oscillation is given by:
x =
],k
(1w
2
,w
2
0
)
(5)
here f / k is the static deflection of the mountings under an applied load f. This
expression is plotted in Fig. 3.5 in terms of the amplitude ratio x divided by static
deflection. It has the well-known feature that the amplitude becomes theoretically
infinite at resonance, w =w
0
.
If the mountings combine springs with an element of viscous damping, the equa-
tion of motion becomes:
m
J
2
x
Jt
2
+c
Jx
Jt
+kx =] sin wt
40
30
20
10
5
4
3
2
1
0.2
N
a
t
u
r
a
l

f
r
e
q
u
e
n
c
y

(
H
z
)
0.5 1 2 5
Static deflection (mm)
10 20 50 100 300
Figure 3.4 Relationship between static deection and natural frequency
Vibration and noise 27
6
4
2
0
0
A
m
p
l
i
t
u
d
e

r
a
t
i
o
1 2
Frequency ratio

## Figure 3.5 Relationship between frequency and amplitude ratio (transmissibil-

ity) undamped vibration
where c is a damping coefficient. The steady state solution is:
x =
f/k

1
w
2
w
2
0

2
+
w
2
c
2
mkw
2
0
sin(wt A) (6a)
If we define a dimensionless damping ratio:
C
2
=
c
2
4mk
this equation may be written:
x =
],k

1
w
2
w
2
0

2
+4C
2
w
2
w
2
0
sin(wt A) (6b)
(if C=1 we have the condition of critical damping when, if the mass is displaced
and released, it will return eventually to its original position without overshoot).
The amplitude of the oscillation is given by the first part of this expression:
amplitude =
],k

1
w
2
w
2
0

2
+4C
2
w
2
w
2
0