The lightweight equipment required for flight must be strong and able to withstand harsh environments and extreme load cases. Such lightweight structures are prone to vibration, so care must be taken in the design of devices for shock and vibration. Managing the resonances associated with these lightweight structures poses a major challenge.
Simulation is a valuable tool for quantifying designs and systems destined for flight. Xi’s engineers attempt to consider all possibilities from traditional stiffening, springs and dampers to active control systems such as Macro Fibre Composite (MFC) piezo actuators. These are specially formed piezo arrangements that can produce almost double the strain actuation and four times the strain activation density of traditional through plane poled ceramic piezo. With appropriate control these can be applied to light weight structures to damp and suppress otherwise damaging resonant, and even forced vibration, behaviour.