Damped Vibration: Definition, Advantages, Disadvantages

By Deepak Yadav|Updated : January 13th, 2023

Damped Vibration refers to the phenomenon where the amplitude of a vibrating system decreases over time due to the presence of a damping force. This force, also known as a damping coefficient, opposes the system's motion and causes the vibration's energy to be dissipated. Damped vibrations are commonly observed in mechanical systems, such as bridges and buildings, and in electrical and electronic systems, such as circuits and filters.

There are two main types of damped vibrations: critically damped and overdamped. Critically damped vibrations occur when the damping force is sufficient to prevent the vibration from oscillating indefinitely. Overdamped vibrations occur when the damping force exceeds the critically damped value, causing the system to return to equilibrium without oscillating. Understanding and controlling damped vibrations is important in many engineering and scientific applications, as it can help to improve the performance and safety of systems.

What do you mean by Damped Vibration?

The phenomenon of damped vibration occurs when the amplitude of a vibrating system diminishes over time due to the existence of a damping force. This force resists the system's motion and causes the vibration's energy to dissipate, resulting in the system eventually returning to rest. Damping can occur naturally, such as through friction or air resistance, or it can be artificially introduced through the use of dampers or other devices.

Damped vibration is one of the three types of vibration, whereas the other two are free and forced vibrations. Damped vibrations are commonly observed in mechanical systems, such as bridges and buildings, and in electrical and electronic systems, such as circuits and filters.

Damped Vibration definition

"Damped vibration refers to the phenomenon in which the amplitude of a vibrating system decreases over time due to dissipative forces, such as friction or air resistance. These forces convert some of the energy of the vibration into other forms, such as heat, resulting in a decrease in the amplitude of the motion. The motion may eventually stop if the damping is strong enough."

Damped System

A damped system is a mechanical or electrical system in which the amplitude of vibration or oscillation decreases over time due to a damping force. The damping force opposes the system's motion and causes the energy of the vibration to be dissipated, resulting in the system eventually coming to rest. The amount of damping present in a system is characterized by a damping coefficient, which can be varied to change the rate at which the system's amplitude of vibration decreases.

There are different types of damped systems:

  • Underdamped systems: The vibration amplitude decreases over time, but the system oscillates before coming to rest.
  • Critically damped systems: The vibration amplitude decreases over time, and the system comes to rest as quickly as possible without oscillating.
  • Overdamped systems: The vibration amplitude decreases over time, and the system returns to equilibrium without oscillating.

Damping can occur naturally, such as through friction or air resistance, or it can be artificially introduced through the use of dampers or other devices. Damped systems are commonly observed in mechanical systems, such as bridges and buildings, and in electrical and electronic systems, such as circuits and filters.

Understanding and controlling the damping of a system is important in many engineering and scientific applications, as it can help to improve the performance and safety of systems.

Equation of Motion of Damped System

The equation of motion for a damped system can be derived using Newton's second law, which states that the force acting on a system is equal to its mass multiplied by its acceleration. In the case of a damped system, the equation of motion can be written as:

F = ma + cv

where F is the force acting on the system, m is the system's mass, a is the system's acceleration, c is the damping coefficient, and v is the system's velocity. The damping force cv is proportional to the system's velocity and acts in the opposite direction to the velocity.

The equation of motion for a damped system can also be written in the form of a second-order differential equation:

mx''(t) + cx'(t) + k*x(t) = F(t)

where x(t) is the displacement of the system, k is the spring constant, F(t) is the external force acting on the system, x'(t) is the velocity and x''(t) is the acceleration of the system.

Solving this equation gives the solution for the system displacement as a function of time, which can be used to determine the amplitude, frequency, and phase of the damped vibrations.

It's worth noting that this is a general form of the equation, and the specific form of the equation can vary depending on the system type and the assumptions we make while deriving it.

Advantages of Damped Vibration

This type of vibration has various advantages over others. Damping helps to improve stability and reduce wear and tear on the components of the system while also reducing the noise generated by the vibrations. It also increases safety and efficiency and improves control over the amplitude and rate of decay of the vibrations in the system. There are several advantages of damped vibration:

  1. Improved stability: Damping helps decrease the amplitude of the vibrations and prevents the system from oscillating indefinitely, which improves the system's stability.
  2. Reduced wear and tear: Damping reduces the amplitude of the vibrations and thus reduces the wear and tear on the components of the system, which can extend the system's lifespan.
  3. Reduced noise: Damping can also reduce the noise generated by a vibrating system, benefiting applications such as machinery and vehicles.
  4. Increased safety: In structures such as bridges and buildings, damping can help to reduce the amplitude of vibrations and thus reduce the risk of structural failure or collapse.
  5. Increased efficiency: Damping can help reduce the energy loss in the system, which can increase the system's efficiency.
  6. Improved control: By controlling the damping coefficient, it's possible to control the amplitude and the rate of decay of the vibrations in the system, which can be useful in many applications.

It's worth noting that too much damping can also be detrimental to the system's performance, so the optimal level of damping is often a trade-off between stability, efficiency, and other factors specific to the application.

Disadvantages of Damped Vibration

Damping can decrease the natural frequency of the system, reduce the amplitude of vibrations, and increase the system's cost, making it more difficult to control and may affect the system's performance if damping is too high. It can also cause a system's energy loss, decreasing its efficiency. While damped vibration has many advantages, it also has some disadvantages:

  1. Reduced natural frequency: The introduction of damping can decrease the system's natural frequency, making it less responsive to certain external forces.
  2. Reduced amplitude of vibration: Damping can reduce the amplitude of the vibrations, which may not be desirable in certain applications where high amplitude vibrations are required.
  3. Increased cost: Using dampers or other devices to artificially introduce damping can increase the cost of the system.
  4. Difficulty in controlling damping: It can be difficult to control the amount of damping in a system, particularly in systems exposed to a wide range of temperatures and humidity levels.
  5. It may affect the system's performance if the damping is too high.
  6. It can also cause a system's energy loss, decreasing its efficiency.

It's worth noting that the disadvantages of damped vibration can vary depending on the application and system, and the optimal level of damping is often a trade-off between stability, efficiency, and other factors specific to the application.

Important GATE Notes
Conceptual DesignSimple Harmonic Motion
Zeroth and First Laws of ThermodynamicsUniversal Joint
First Law of ThermodynamicsHelical Gear
Triangle Law of ForcesConnecting Rod
Types of SupportConstant Acceleration
Mechanical EnergyConstant Velocity

Get complete information about the GATE exam pattern, cut-off, and all those related things on the BYJU’S Exam Prep official youtube channel.

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FAQs about Damped Vibration

  • An underdamped system is a system in which the vibration amplitude decreases over time, but the system oscillates for a period of time before coming to rest. A critically damped system is a system in which the vibration amplitude decreases over time, and the system comes to rest as quickly as possible without oscillating. An overdamped system is a system in which the free vibration amplitude decreases over time, and the system returns to its equilibrium position without oscillating.

  • The damping coefficient is mathematically represented as a proportionality constant between the damping force and the system's velocity. It is denoted by the symbol "c" and has units of Ns/m or Ns/rad in mechanical systems, and in electrical systems, it can be represented as Ohm/s.

  • Common sources of damping in mechanical systems include friction, air resistance, and internal damping in materials. Friction occurs when two surfaces rub against each other, and air resistance occurs when the system moves through the air. Internal energy dissipation mechanisms in the materials cause internal damping in materials.

  • Damping is important in controlling vibrations in bridges and buildings. By reducing the amplitude of the vibrations, damping can help to reduce the risk of structural failure or collapse. Additionally, damping can help to reduce the amount of energy being transferred to the structure, which can help to reduce the overall load on the structure.

  • Damping can be artificially introduced through dampers or other devices. Common types of dampers include viscous dampers, which use a fluid to dissipate energy, and viscoelastic dampers, which use a material that changes shape under load. Another way to introduce damping is through electronic devices such as damping circuits.

  • The damping coefficient has a significant effect on the response of a system. If the damping coefficient is too low, the system will oscillate indefinitely and may be unstable. If the damping coefficient is too high, the system will return to its equilibrium position too quickly and may not be responsive enough. The optimal damping coefficient is often a trade-off between stability and responsiveness, and it can vary depending on the application and system.

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