Exeter University Employs ETS Vibration Test Solution In Its Research To Improve The Energy Efficiency Of Engineering Systems

CentraTEQ Ltd recently completed the installation of a Vibration Test System in the Engineering Department at the University of Exeter. The system, an ETS Solutions MPA101/L215M Shaker system and controller, is capable of 200 Newtons force, with a 1 inch peak -peak displacement.

Exeter Engineering is a growing multi-disciplinary General Engineering department of 80 research active staff. It is organised into eight research groups (Nano Engineering Science & Technology, Water and Environment, Materials and Manufacturing, Dynamics and Control, Engineering Management, Civil and Structures, Renewable Energy, and Responsible Mining) across two University campuses. Six of these are located on the Streatham campus in Exeter. The Responsible Mining group is part of the multidisciplinary Camborne School of Mines and is located, along with the Renewable Energy group, at Penryn in Cornwall.

 As a department, Engineering seeks to build on the strong international influence as well as cultivate a significant regional presence in South West England. It continues to pursue its reputation for delivering excellent research based around themed multidisciplinary groups and centres, exploiting existing areas of strength and developing new ones, creating strong partnerships with industry, and taking advantage of the emerging Exeter Science Park.

 The new ETS shaker system will be used for multiple purposes by a number of academic staff in the Department, but the primary use of the system will be for the vibration testing of impact or rotating systems to develop energy saving control technology for a broad range of engineering applications, such as percussive drilling for oil and gas exploitation, energy harvesting and rotating machinery.

 Professor Yang Liu, Associate Professor in Dynamics and Control, is in charge of the new vibration test equipment. “Engineering has always been a driver of innovation and change, and at Exeter, we pride ourselves in continuing this legacy with excellent thinkers and ideas” he commented.

 The UK has been one of the industrial powerhouses of Europe since the time of the Industrial Revolution. Today, it is a major challenge for power intensive industries to optimise their energy strategy to ensure long-term sustainable economic growth. Strategies to improve the energy efficiency of engineering systems are vital. Professor Yang Liu continues, “My research intends to unravel a practical question: can we improve the energy efficiency of engineering systems through judiciously switching between their multi-stable states. My mission is to develop a novel control strategy for engineering systems in order to maintain their performance within a satisfactory level by implementing an energy-optimal steering.”

 When asked about the decision to purchase the ETS solution from CentraTEQ Professor Liu explains, “ We discussed our requirements with potential suppliers, who advised us on the options available. The ETS solution proved to be the perfect size and capacity, suitable for the limited space in our laboratory - backed up by an affordable price tag.  Moreover, the CentraTEQ engineers were able to deliver invaluable expertise and knowledge.”

 Jim Flanagan, MD of CentraTEQ added “We are delighted to be working with the University of Exeter on this valued and important project to improve the efficiencies in engineering systems across a wide range of applications. The team at Exeter are an extremely knowledgeable group of Engineers and we look forward to working with them on this project and many others in the future.”

The range of ETS vibration systems from CentraTEQ includes models suitable for simple tests on small electronics assemblies & storage devices through to large sized electronic assemblies and critical parts for automotive, aviation, aerospace and military systems.

All systems are designed to meet the requirements of endurance testing, a test environment typical in the automotive industry. All systems comply with international standards including MIL-STD, ASTM, IEC, ISO, BS, RTCA and European CE standards.