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The inerter and its application to vehicle suspensions: Design, experiments and nonlinear analysis

The inerter is a novel, passive mechanical element which is the exact analogue of the capacitor under the force-current analogy between electrical and mechanical networks. Using this analogy we can use the electrical circuit synthesis results to construct a passive mechanical network given its positive real admittance function. In this presentation we will use these ideas to design passive suspensions for a quarter-car model in order to investigate whether the use of the "inerter" can provide further improvements in the ride comfort, tyre grip and handling of the suspension over conventional spring-damper suspensions. The design of the passive suspension is formulated as an optimization problem using matrix inequalities. It will be shown that the use of the inerter provides a substantial improvement in the performance of suspensions by considering standard performance measures for suspension design. We will also present results from the experimental testing of prototype inerter devices on a hydraulic test rig. Various instability problems encountered during the experimental procedure due to the backlash in the devices will be addressed. The experimental results show that it is possible to construct devices that approximate the ideal inerter behaviour over a useful frequency range. Finally, we propose a nonlinear simulation set-up for analysing the behaviour of suspensions with nonlinear components either inerters or dampers as a final step before fitting the actual suspension on the real car and performing further testing.
Type of Seminar:
Public Seminar
Dr. Christos Papageorgiou
Cambridge University, Engineering Department, Cambridge, CB2 1PZ, UK
Aug 30, 2006   11:00

Physikstr. 3, Building ETL, Room K25
Contact Person:

Prof. John Lygeros
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Biographical Sketch:
Date of Birth: 16th April 1975 Nationality: Cypriot EDUCATION 1999 - 2003 Control Group, Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, UK. Degree Awarded: Ph.D. in Control Engineering. 1998 - 1999 Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, UK. Degree Awarded: MEng in Electrical and Information Sciences (Part 2) with distinction. 1995 - 1998 Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, UK. Degree Awarded: BA in Electrical and Information Sciences (Part 1) with First-Class Honours. 1991-1993 Christodoulou and Antoniades, Centre of Mathematics and Science. Limassol, Cyprus. A’ level degrees awarded: Physics with grade A. Statistics with grade A. Applied Mathematics with grade A. Pure Mathematics with grade A. O’ level degrees awarded: English Language with grade A. PRIZES AND AWARDS 1999 - 2002 Cambridge Commonwealth Trust Scholarship, awarded together with an ORS (Overseas Research Scholarship) award to read for the Ph.D. degree. 1999 M.T. Meyer Scholarship and Christina Barnard Prize, awarded by Girton College for achieving distinction in the MEng degree. 1998 - 1999 Bursary, awarded by the A.G. LEVENTIS FOUNDATION to read for the MEng degree. WORK EXPERIENCE Since April 2006 Research Associate in the Control Group at the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge. Working on modeling vehicle dynamics in SimMechanics, design of optimum passive suspensions and modeling of motorcycle steering compensators. Jan 2005- March 2006 Research Associate in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Cyprus. Working on a project funded by the Research Promotion Foundation of Cyprus and Cambridge University Engineering Department with title “The incorporation of the inerter in the design of vehicle suspension systems”. Oct 2003 - Dec 2004 Post-Doctoral Research Associate in the Control Group at the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge. Working on a project funded by EPSRC. The project is aimed to test a prototype of a new mechanical element called the “inerter” using a vibration test rig and to investigate the performance improvement in vehicle suspension systems when using the inerter.