A Vibration Test Stand for a Thermal Systems Laboratory

Horacio Perez-Blanco, P. Michaleris, Matthew Hall, Ming Chang Pai

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    2 Scopus citations


    This report documents our experience developing a novel test stand for a thermal systems laboratory. The laboratory is the Texaco Energy Systems Lab at the Mechanical Engineering Department of Penn State. This lab was conceived to help engineering students appraise the integrating nature of the design activity. Among other test stands, the lab has an instrumented 1C engine. The level of instrumentation allows an energy balance on the engine, and computation of magnitudes such as volumetric and thermal efficiency. Vibration elimination or absorption has important consequences for product life and appeal. Thus, an identical engine, externally driven, was mounted on a specially designed base of variable stiffness. In this engine, valve and piston displacement can be monitored via accelerometers. The base displacement as function of time can be captured via an LVDT sensor. Analysis of the data allows determination of two dominant frequencies, and of the corresponding phase angle.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)383-389
    Number of pages7
    JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
    Issue number5
    StatePublished - Dec 1 1999

    All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

    • Education
    • Engineering(all)


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