Planetary Gear Modal Vibration Experiments and Correlation against Lumped-Parameter and Finite Element Models

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Journal of Sound and Vibration





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Experimental modal analysis techniques are applied to characterize the planar dynamic behavior of two spur planetary gears. Rotational and translational vibrations of the sun gear, carrier, and planet gears are measured. Experimentally obtained natural frequencies, mode shapes, and dynamic response are compared to the results from lumped-parameter and finite element models. Two qualitatively different classes of mode shapes in distinct frequency ranges are observed in the experiments and confirmed by the lumped-parameter model, which considers the accessory shafts and fixtures in the system to capture all of the natural frequencies and modes. The finite element model estimates the high-frequency modes that have significant tooth mesh deflection without considering the shafts and fixtures. The lumped-parameter and finite element models accurately predict the natural frequencies and modal properties established by experimentation. Rotational, translational, and planet mode types presented in published mathematical studies are confirmed experimentally. The number and types of modes in the low-frequency and high-frequency bands depend on the degrees of freedom in the central members and planet gears, respectively. The accuracy of natural frequency prediction is improved when the planet bearings have differing stiffnesses in the tangential and radial directions, consistent with the bearing load direction. (C) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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