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Teaching Industrial Applications Of Vibration Measurement And Analysis Techniques

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



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Page Numbers

6.947.1 - 6.947.7

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Karen Horton

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3248

Teaching Industrial Applications of Vibration Measurement and Analysis Techniques

Karen J. Horton, P.E. University of Maine


A new junior level technical elective titled Industrial Vibrations has been developed for Mechanical Engineering Technology students at the University of Maine. The course addresses the needs of local industries such as paper production and shipbuilding, but the concepts are applicable to a wide range of industries. Course prerequisites include calculus, but not differential equations, and strengths of materials. Dynamics is a corequisite. Technical Vibrations focuses on three areas: 1. analysis of one degree of freedom spring-mass-damper systems with an emphasis on the design of machinery foundations; 2. use of a portable spectral analyzer to perform resonance testing and machinery vibration testing; 3. room airborne noise predictions due to machinery noise. MathCAD is used to solve graphically the second order ordinary differential equations describing free and forced single degree of freedom systems. Machinery measurements are taken at the University Central Heating Plant using the CSi Model 2110 Machinery Analyzer. Predictive maintenance concepts are addressed.

Objectives of New Course “Industrial Vibrations”

A large percentage of graduates of the Mechanical Engineering Technology program at the University of Maine are employed in industries such as pulp and paper, shipbuilding, and manufacturing of electronic components. These and many other manufacturing industries have a need for engineers familiar with techniques to measure and suppress vibrations of industrial equipment. An elective course, Industrial Vibrations, was developed to respond to these needs.

The course Industrial Vibrations was based on three broad objectives. Students successfully completing the course were able to: 1. design basic industrial structures for resonance avoidance; 2. measure vibrations and analyze the data in the time and frequency domains; 3. work with basic acoustic concepts to reduce noise in industrial environments.

In my most recent industrial position I was a Mechanical Engineer in the Noise, Shock, and Vibration Department at Bath Iron Works, shipbuilders and engineers. Some of the vibration tests that we performed included modal testing ship decks, bump testing electronic cabinets, and monitoring machinery during sea trials. We designed machine foundations for resonance avoidance, applied acoustic treatments to reduce ship vulnerability to detection by underwater weapons systems, and designed acoustic treatments to reduce airborne noise. My goal in Industrial Vibrations was to incorporate as many of these interesting and challenging topics as possible into the course.

Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Horton, K. (2001, June), Teaching Industrial Applications Of Vibration Measurement And Analysis Techniques Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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