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# Fundamentals of

Mechanical Vibrations
(MCEN3005)

## NATURAL FREQUENCY AND DAMPING

OF SINGLE DEGREE OF FREEDOM
SYSTEMS
Laboratory Report - 01

Name
Curtin ID
SLIIT ID
Date of submission

:- M.K.S.Liayanarachchi
:- 18373350
:- EN 13522148
:- 24th April 2015

Executive Summary
The objectives of this experiment is to validate two theoretical expression,
1. The mass of the spring can be neglected when calculating natural frequency oscillation,
if the mass of the spring is small when compared with the oscillating mass.
2. The damped natural oscillation frequency is virtually same as undamped natural
oscillation frequency, when the damping ratio is small.
This experiment can be divided into three section. The stiffness of the spring was calculated in
the first part of the experiment. This enabled the use of an accurate value for stiffness of spring
to be used in the latter part of the experiment. Second part of this experiment is to validate the
accuracy of the first expression regarding the mass of the spring and frequency of oscillation.
This was done by directly measuring the period of oscillation of spring mass system for
different applied loads. In third section of this experiment a damper was used to validate the
second expression. The damping ratio of the system was calculated during this section.
The summary of results obtain during first two section of the experiment is given bellow,
Table 1 Summary of results

## Theoretical stiffness of spring = 3295.15 Nm-1

Total mass of
weights on
hanger mi (Kg)

Experimental Period of
oscillations, T (sec)

1.02
1.53
2.04
2.24
2.55
3.06

0.3018
0.324
0.378286
0.370923
0.418167
0.4576

## Experimental stiffness of spring = 3333.33 Nm-1

Theoretical Period of
oscillations without considering
spring mass, T (sec)

Theoretical Period of
oscillations with considering
spring mass, T (sec)

0.121088
0.143884
0.163532
0.170621
0.181061
0.197036

0.121232
0.144005
0.163638
0.170723
0.181157
0.197124

## Following conclusion were derived for the experiment.

1. The stiffness of the spring can be accurately calculated using equation (18)
2. The mass of the spring can be neglected when calculating natural frequency oscillation,
if the ratio of ms/mi is less than 0.06.
3. If the damping ratio is less than 0.2, the natural frequency of damped oscillation is

## virtually identical to undamped natural frequency.

[i]

Executive Summary ................................................................................................................................................. i
List of Figures ......................................................................................................................................................... iii
List of tables ........................................................................................................................................................... iv
1.0 Introduction and Aims ...................................................................................................................................... 1
2.0 Theory ............................................................................................................................................................... 3
2.1 Calculating equivalent mass for a one degree spring mass system when the mass of the spring is not
negligible. ........................................................................................................................................................... 3
2.2 Viscous Damping and its effects .................................................................................................................. 4
3.0 Procedure ......................................................................................................................................................... 6
4.0 Results ............................................................................................................................................................. 7`
4.1 Measuring the Stiffness of a spring .............................................................................................................. 7
4.2 Natural Frequency of Oscillation (without and with lumped mass correction) ............................................ 7
5.0 Calculations....................................................................................................................................................... 8
5.1 Theoretical calculation of stiffness of the spring .......................................................................................... 8
5.2 Experimentally calculating stiffness of the spring ....................................................................................... 9
5.3 Theoretically predicting the period of oscillations with and without considering the spring mass ............ 10
5.4 Graph plotted between time periods versus (mi +mh)^0.5 .......................................................................... 11
5.5 Graph plotted between time periods versus (mi +mh+ ms/3)^0.5 ............................................................... 12
5.6 Graph plotted between time periods versus square root mass for both heavy and light spring .................. 13
6.0 Discussion ....................................................................................................................................................... 14
7.0 Conclusions ..................................................................................................................................................... 16

[ii]

List of Figures
Figure 1 Simple one degree freedom spring mass system ..................................................................... 1
Figure 2 Simple one degrees freedom spring mass system with a heavy spring ................................... 3
Figure 3 Distance to viscous damper and spring for the pivot O ............................................................ 4
Figure 4 Plotted graph between forces vs. deflection ............................................................................ 9
Figure 5 Plotted graph between time period and total mass ............................................................... 11
Figure 6 Plotted graph between time period and total mass ............................................................... 12

[iii]

List of tables
Table 1 Summary of results ..................................................................................................................... i
Table 2 Recorded data on applied load and spring deflection ............................................................... 7
Table 3 Recorded data on total mass and period of oscillation ............................................................. 7
Table 4 Comparison on result obtained on period of oscillation ......................................................... 10

[iv]

## 1.0 Introduction and Aims

This experiment is designed to confirm the accuracy two of the theoretical expressions. First
equation is used when calculating oscillation frequency simple spring-mass oscillator where
spring is not massless. The second equation that would be verified during this laboratory is that
damped natural oscillation frequency is virtually the same as the undamped natural oscillation
frequency when damping ratios less than 0.1 or when there is no deliberately designed damper.
The fundamentals of mechanical Vibrations is an important aspect of mechanical engineering.
Mechanical vibration is strongly connected to classical mechanics, solid mechanics and fluid
dynamics. In most of engineering applications mechanical vibration is significant and proper
calculation must be conducted to understand the dynamic behavior of a system. Vibration may
results in the failure of machines or their critical components. The effects of vibration on
mechanical systems depends on frequency, magnitude of displacement, acceleration and total
duration of the vibration.
Galileo discover the relationship between the length of a pendulum and its frequency. He also
observed the resonance occurring in two bodies with same natural frequency. Just like the mass
pendulum, frequency of oscillation in a one degree freedom simple spring mass system can be
easily calculated using the equation given below.

(01)

Mass (M)
Spring (K)

## Figure 1 Simple one degree freedom spring mass system

[1]

Natural frequency of oscillation in a one degree freedom simple spring mass system can be
calculated by applying newtons second law to the spring mass system and deriving a value for
. This is done using the lamp parameter assumption. There it is assumed that the mass of the
spring is negligible when compared with the oscillating mass. But there may be complicated
systems this assumption is invalid. It could be shown that for those types of systems, the total
mass of the system can be calculated by adding one third of the mass of the spring to the
oscillating mass.
=

2 +
3

(02)

Generally amplitude of natural vibration decays with time. This is due to the effects of
damping. The decaying of amplitude happens since the initial energy contained in the system
has been converted in to form other than kinetic or strain energy. A part of the initial energy
has been converted into other form- usually heat by the damper. Damping mechanism can take
several forms. Mainly,
1) Coulomb Damping
2) Hysteretic Damping
3) Viscous Damping
Viscous damping can be found in many mechanical systems. Viscous drag or viscous damping
force can be represented as,
=

(03)

## Natural frequency of a damped system, compared to the undammed natural frequency, is

reduced by a factor.
= 1 2

(04)

But when damping ratio is small, the ratio between damped and undamped natural frequencies
is almost equal to 0ne. A typical range for the damping ratio for an engineering application is
around 0.002-0.05. Values higher than 0.2 is archived by deliberately designing dampers in the
system.

[2]

2.0 Theory
2.1 Calculating equivalent mass for a one degree spring mass system when the mass of the
spring is not negligible.

V
v
c

dc

Mass (M)
Heavy Spring (K)

Figure 2 Simple one degrees freedom spring mass system with a heavy spring

1
Kinetic energy of the body only = 2
2

(05)

## Kinetic energy of the element of the spring = ( ) 2

2

(06)

2
From triangles , = ( )

(07)

1 2 2

2 2 0

(08)

1 2
( )
2 3

(09)

## kinetic energy of the whole spring =

By equating the maximum strain energy and kinetic energy, natural frequency of oscillation can be
calculated,

+ 3

[3]

(10)

## For small angel ,

Vertical deflection at the point which the spring is attached, () =

2 2 =
+

2
2
+

(11)
(12)

2 =

2 4
4 2

2
=

(13)

2

= 1 =

[4]

1 2
2 4

(1 2
)
2
4

(14)

## From the logarithmic decrement,

=

2
1
( ) =

By substitution

(15)

2
( )

2
(

2
)
2 ]

(16)
+1

And

2 4
2
= 1 2
= 1

[5]

(17)

3.0 Procedure
The objective of this experiment is to measure effects of spring mass and damping on simple
one-degree spring mass systems. Stiffness of the spring is used in calculating the natural
frequency. So first part of this laboratory is to measure the stiffness of the spring. This can be
determined by measuring its stretch due to a known load. To improve the accuracy of
calculating the mass of the spring a graph was used to generate the average value. During the
experiment deflection of the spring was measured for appropriate mass increment. Then a
graph was drawn using load as the abscissa and deflection as Ordinate. The slope of that graph
is equal to 1/k (m/N). So the spring stiffness would be equal to 1/slope (N/m).
After calculating spring stiffness, the mass of the spring and hanger was measured. The spring
and hanger was the reinstalled to the apparatus. To calculate the natural frequency of
oscillation, a vertical oscillation with an amplitude about 10mm was induced to the apparatus
and recorded the time it takes to complete a specific number of cycles. After tabulating the data
two graphs were drawn. The first graph is drawn between T versus square root of (mi + mh).
The second graph was drawn between T versus square root of (mi + mh + ms/3). These graphs
would enable comparison between natural frequencies calculate with considering the mass of
the spring and neglecting the mass of the spring.
After measuring the effects of spring mass for natural frequency, another part of this
experiment must be carried out to calculate the effects of damping on natural frequency. First
measure a (distance to damper form pivot) and c (distance to spring for pivot) to the nearest
mm. Then drain the oil from dashpot and measure the undamped natural frequency by
measuring the time it takes to complete 40 oscillations. After that calculate Io from equation
(??). Next refill the dashpot and enable the chart recorder function. Displace the free end of
oscillating arm about 35mm and release it. Record a time trace of amplitude y versus time
which contains about 20 cycles. From these data calculate damping coefficient q. after that
determine the frequency of damped free oscillation with the use of digital counter.

[6]

4.0 Results

Mass of spring
Mass of hanger
Spring length
Wire diameter
No of coils
Outer coil diameter
Inner coil diameter

=8.82g
=218.16g
=31.38g
=1.30mm
=25
=10.96mm
=8.36mm

## 4.1 Measuring the Stiffness of a spring

Table 2 Recorded data on applied load and spring deflection

Total suspended
mass, mi (kg)

0
1
2
3
4
5
6

Total force,
Fi=mig (N)

0.218
0.728
1.238
1.747
2.257
2.767
3.276

2.14
7.14
12.14
17.14
22.14
27.14
32.14

i (mm)
0
2
8
14
23
30
37

Deflection,
i-o (mm)
0
2
8
14
23
30
37

Increment in
Deflection (mm)
0
2
6
6
7
7
7

4.2 Natural Frequency of Oscillation (without and with lumped mass correction)
Table 3 Recorded data on total mass and period of oscillation

Total mass of
weights on
hanger mi (Kg)
1.02
1.53
2.04
2.24
2.55
3.06

Number of
cycles, N
100
80
70
65
60
50

## Mean time for N

oscillations, t
(sec)
30.18
25.92
26.48
24.11
25.09
22.88

[7]

Period of
oscillations,
T (sec)
0.3018
0.324
0.378286
0.370923
0.418167
0.4576

+
(Kg)-0.5
1.112654
1.322120
1.502664
1.567801
1.663731
1.810525

+ +

.(Kg)-0.5
1.113975
1.323231
1.503642
1.568738
1.664614
1.811337

5.0 Calculations
5.1 Theoretical calculation of stiffness of the spring
From strength of material text will show that,
=
Where,

8 3
4

(18)

= stretch
P = axial load
D = mean coil diameter
n = number of coils
G = shear modulus of wire
d = wire diameter

## The stiffness of the spring can be calculated from following equation

8 3 1
=
=

4
=
8 3
=

(208109 )(0.0013)4
8(9.66)3 25

= 3295.151 1

[8]

(18)

0.01
0.009

y = 0.0003x

0.008

Deflection (m)

0.007
0.006
0.005
0.004
0.003
0.002
0.001
0
-2
0
-0.001

10

12

14

16

18

20

22

24

Force (N)

## Figure 4 Plotted graph between forces vs. deflection

Calculating the stiffness of the spring using the slope of the graph,
() =

1
= 0.0003

= 3333.33 1

[9]

26

28

30

32

34

5.3 Theoretically predicting the period of oscillations with and without considering the spring
mass
2
() = ( ) +

() = (

2
333.333

) +

() = (0.1088280163) +

, () = ( ) + +
3

() = (
) + +
3
3333.333
() = (0.1088280163) + +

## Table 4 Comparison on result obtained on period of oscillation

Total mass of
weights on
hanger mi (Kg)

Experimental Period
of oscillations, T (sec)

1.02
1.53
2.04
2.24
2.55
3.06

0.3018
0.324
0.378286
0.370923
0.418167
0.4576

## Theoretical Period of oscillations

without considering spring mass,
T (sec)

0.121088
0.143884
0.163532
0.170621
0.181061
0.197036

[10]

Theoretical Period of
oscillations with considering
spring mass, T (sec)

0.121232
0.144005
0.163638
0.170723
0.181157
0.197124

2
y = 3.9934x

## Time Period (s)

1.5

0.5

0
-0.1

0.1

0.2

0.3

-0.5

+ (2 )
Figure 5 Plotted graph between time period and total mass

[11]

0.4

0.5

5.5 Graph plotted between time periods versus (mi +mh+ ms/3)^0.5

+ +

(2 )

2
y = 3.996x

1.5

0.5

0
-0.1

0
-0.5

0.1

0.2

+ +

0.3

## Figure 6 Plotted graph between time period and total mass

[12]

0.4

0.5

5.6 Graph plotted between time periods versus square root mass for both heavy and light
spring

Heavy Spring

Light Spring

0.5

## TIME PERIOD (S)

0.45

0.4

0.35

0.3

0.25
1

1.1

1.2

1.3

1.4

1.5

1.6

1.7

1.8

1.9

M
Figure 7plotted graph of time period vs total mass

This graph indicated that there is no significant difference for the time period of heavy spring
and light spring for this experiment.

[13]

6.0 Discussion
First part of this experiment is about calculating the spring stiffness. The spring stiffness was
calculated using a graph. The graph was drawn using load as the abscissa and deflection as
Ordinate. The slope of that graph is equal to 1/k (m/N). So the spring stiffness would be equal
to 1/slope (N/m). The theoretical shape of the graph is y=mx, so that the origin (0, 0) is a point
in graph that is known without any uncertainty.
Spring stiffness can be also calculated using the relationship between load and stretch for a
close-coiled helical spring. The spring stiffness is equal P/. Measurements on mean coil
diameter, wire diameter, shear modulus of the spring material and number of coils are needed
calculate spring stiffness using this formula. The difference between spring stiffness is due to
errors in measurement, non-uniformity of the spring material, errors in applied load.
Data point that were collected to draw the graph of force verse deflection is not in straight line,
this due to errors on measuring and non-linearity of the spring. There is a small difference
between spring stiffness calculated from the equation and stiffness calculated form the graph.
The difference between experiment and theoretical values of spring stiffness is about 38Nm-1
and this is due errors in measuring the diameter of spring, difference actual youngs modulus
and effects of helix angle of the spring
When measuring period of oscillation in the system is done by measuring the mean time for a
large number of oscillations and dividing it by number of cycles. When selecting the number
of cycles it must not be very small so that the error when measuring the time is high and number
of cycle should not be very large so that the vibration amplitude decays significantly. Doing
the experiment for the same weight three or more times and taking the average of the period of
oscillation lowers the uncertainty errors. When taking the average reject any obvious outlying
measurements to improve the accuracy of the period.
Since the mass of the spring that were used in this experiment is negligible when compared
with the oscillating mass. There are no significant difference on natural oscillation frequency
between with and without the spring mass. The natural frequency of oscillation is predicted
theatrically will be more accurate when the mass of the spring is considered. When the ratio
between ms/mi is equal to 0.06 the different between natural frequencies obtained considering
with and without the spring mass is less than 1%. So if the ratio between ms/mi is less than
0.06, then the mass of the spring can easily be neglected.
[14]

If the mass of the spring used in this experiment is large such as around 2kg, the effect of the
mass of the spring could be observed easily. But due to resource limitation this spring was the
heaviest spring that could be used with the apparatus.
There is more than 50% difference between theoretical periods of oscillation and experimental
period of oscillation is mainly due to error of measuring the mean time for N number of
oscillations.
Damping is important in engineering applications since it prevents systems oscillating at high
amplitudes at resonance. Natural frequency of oscillation changes when there is significant
amount of damping present in the system. But this effect is negligible if the damping ratio is
less than 0.2.
During the practical the oil from the dashpot is removed to get the undamped natural frequency
of the system. This method is more accurate than removing the damper from the apparatus
when calculating natural frequency. This is due to the fact if the dashpot was removed from
the system, the mass of the system will change thus changes the natural frequency.

[15]

7.0 Conclusions
From looking at the results obtained from the first part of the experiment following conclusion
can be derived. The experimental and theoretical values for the spring stiffness is almost
identical, so a conclusion could be derived that the equation that were used to predict the spring
stiffness is accurate. And also another conclusion can be derived about the relationship between
applied load and deflection. From the data obtained it is safe to assume that there is a linear
relationship between applied load and deflection.
Form the second part of the experiment following conclusions can be derived. By looking at
the collected data from the experiment it is safe to assume that if the mass of the spring is small
when compared with the oscillating mass, then the mass of the spring can be neglected when
calculating the natural frequency of oscillation. So if the ratio between ms/mi is less than 0.06,
then the mass of the spring can easily be neglected when calculating the natural frequency.
Another conclusion that can be derived for this part of the experiment is that there is a linear
relationship between the period of oscillation and square root of the total applied load on the
spring.

[16]