Design tool for dynamic loading conditions: A coupled multi-level approach

Styan Zwerus, Marnix Kuilman, Stefan Kamphuis, Wessel W. Wits*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articleAcademicpeer-review

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Conceptualizing a sound mechanical system exposed to dynamic loading conditions throughout its lifetime is a challenging task ill-supported by current design tooling. Current approaches typically use a Shock Response Spectrum (SRS) as design specification that describes the maximum dynamic response of a single subsystem component due to a given loading condition. However, for complex systems during the early stages of the design, there is a need to gain quick insights into the impact of dynamic loading conditions applied to system level as well as to subsystem and component levels simultaneously. Hereto, in this study, a coupled multi-level model has been developed that describes all essential elements of a system. The advantage of this approach is that rather than one single SRS, now upon each element an SRS can be prescribed. Multi-level shock response spectra can be computed in a time-efficient manner and, for the first time, peak acceleration and displacement for various combinations of natural frequencies may be displayed. Hence, effectively translating how subsystems and components within a multi-level dynamic system may be mounted or suspended constructively. Subsystem components and the system as a whole can be analysed simultaneously, and the sensitivity of subsystem conceptual design choices can be examined. This allows design engineers to get detailed overviews of (sub)system-level responses due to (critical) dynamic loading conditions and multi-level loading scenarios. Design insights can be evaluated within minutes aiding to find potential configurations that match the design requirements. Moreover, the developed design tool aids in both dealing with uncertainty of requirements during the project definition phase and designing a robust system against late-stage requirement updates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-342
Number of pages6
JournalProcedia CIRP
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes
Event31st CIRP Design Conference 2021 - University of Twente, Online Conference, Netherlands
Duration: 19 May 202121 May 2021
Conference number: 31


  • Conceptual design
  • Dynamic loading conditions
  • Multi-level MDOF
  • Shock response spectrum (SRS)
  • System architecture


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