Active damping of space structures by contact pressure control in joints

  • Gaul L
  • Lenz J
  • Sachau D
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Lightweight flexible structures e.g. for large deployable space systems
often consist of truss structures. The truss elements are connected
by joints. Microslip and macroslip in the joint contact surfaces
are the dominating dissipation mechanisms as compared to material
damping and environmental damping if no additional damping measures
are applied. So far only control of operational modes by actuators
in the truss element is realized. The present paper aims to control
the nonlinear transfer behaviour of joints by adapting the contact
pressure. This is achieved by piezoelectric elements in bolted connections.
Active joint description by ODE with internal variables backed by
experimental data is implemented in the hybrid multibody system (MBS)
of the assembled truss structure. The structural response is decomposed
in large rigid body motion and superimposed small elastic deformations.
The equations of motion are linearized by a perturbation technique
based on the splitting of low frequency and high frequency modal
contents. The flexibility of the MBS is treated by superposition
of structural modes calculated by FEM in the sense of a Ritz approximation.
Simulation of free as well as forced vibrations of the structure
with active joints in a closed control loop underline the gain of
damping performance compared to the associated passive system.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Bolted joints; Computer simulation; Damping; Defor
  • Flexible structures
  • Multibody systems (MBS)

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  • ISSN: 10466770
  • PUI: 28743298
  • SGR: 0031372397
  • SCOPUS: 2-s2.0-0031372397


  • L Gaul

  • J Lenz

  • D Sachau

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