Magnetorheological (MR) fluid damper design typically constitutes a piston/dashpot configuration. During reciprocation, the fluid is circulated through the device with the generated pressure providing viscous damping. In addition, the damper is also intended to accommodate off-axis loading; i.e., rotation moments and lateral loads orthogonal to the axis of operation. Typically two sets of seals, one where the piston shaft enters and exits the device and one between the piston and the cylinder wall, maintain alignment of the damper and seal the fluid from leaking. With MR fluid, these seals can act as sources of non-linear friction effects (stiction) and oftentimes possess a shorter lifespan due to the abrasive nature of the ferrous particles suspended in the fluid. Intelligently controlling damping forces must also accommodate the non-linear stiction behavior, which degrades performance. A new, unique MR fluid isolator was designed, fabricated and tested that directly addresses these concerns. The goal of this research was the development of a stiction-free MR isolator whose damping force can be predicted and precisely controlled. This paper presents experimental results for a prototype device and compares those results to model predictions.
As technologies for magnetorheological (MR) fluid hardware further evolve towards commercial adoption, the appeal for simpler, more cost-effective solutions becomes evident. While the skills involved in methods of manufacturing and cost-reduction efforts for mass production lie with the manufacturing community, practical and cost-effective MR technologies must first exist. As part of a 'whole approach' MR solution, the MR damper technology presented in this paper illustrates the development of a fast-response, low-power, cost-effective solution. Fundamentally, a competitive 'whole approach' active or semi-active MR solution can be viewed as system of separate components: parameter sensing, intelligent control, power delivery, and MR hardware technology. The development of any one single component should not successfully evolve without the addressing the cost efficiency and commercialization concerns of the other three. The MR hardware component should be predictable in performance behavior, capable of high damping force at minimal power, and fast in time response to complement simplified control schemes. The design effort is further challenged to meet these requirements within a simple, cost-effective package that holds commercial development appeal. This research includes the characterization of a new prototype MR damper including a description of the device technology, characterization test results and current work. It is evident by these results that this MR technology, comprising simple, commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) components where possible, presents an attractive, practical and cost effective component of the 'whole approach' MR solution.
This paper presents the development and evaluation of a controllable, semi-active magneto-rheological fluid (MRF) shock absorber for a High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV). The University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) MRF damper is tailored for structures and ground vehicles that undergo a wide range of dynamic loading. It also has the capability for unique rebound and compression characteristics. The new MRF shock absorber emulates the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) shock absorber behavior in passive mode, and provides a wide controllable damping force range. A theoretical study is performed to evaluate the UNR MRF shock absorber. The Bingham plastic theory is employed to model the nonlinear behavior of the MR fluid. A fluid-mechanics-based theoretical model along with a three-dimensional finite element electromagnetic analysis is utilized to predict the MRF damper performance. The theoretical results are compared with experimental data and are demonstrated to be in excellent agreement.
This paper presents the development and evaluation of a controllable, semi-active magneto-rheological (MR) fluid shock absorber. This is a new design that is tailored for structures and ground vehicles that undergo a wide range of dynamic loading including the capability for passive, load-specific, individual rebound and compression characteristics. The specific application for testing and proof-of-concept is the AM General HMMWV (High Mobility, Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle). The new MR shock absorber emulates stock, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) shock absorber behavior in passive mode (i.e., zero-field) and provides a wide range of controllable damping force above (and below, if needed) zero- field damping levels.