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Active Vibration Control of a Light and Flexible Stress Ribbon Footbridge using Pneumatic Muscles

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In the lab of the Conceptual and Structural Design Group at TU Berlin, there is an experimental Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastics (CFRP) stress ribbon bridge with 13 meters span. Its lightness and flexibility result in high vibration sensitivity. To reduce pedestrian-induced vibrations, very light pneumatic muscle actuators are placed at handrail level to provide control inputs. Based on a reduced discretized analytical model for the bridge, we have designed a multivariable velocity feedback control strategy to actively damp the first three vertical modes [1] [2]. To handle the nonlinearities of the muscle actuator, a subsidiary nonlinear force controller has been synthesized using exact linearization methods [3]. The resulting control scheme was validated in simulation and experiment. It is an attractive alternative to approaches where only passive damping is used.

Figure 1: Experimental Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastics (CFRP) stress ribbon bridge in the lab of the Conceptual and Structural Design Group at TU Berlin.

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  1. Bleicher, A., Schlaich, M., Fujinof, Y., Schauer, T.. Model-based design and experimental validation of active vibration control for a stress ribbon bridge using pneumatic muscle actuators. Engineering structures, 33 (8):2237–2247, 2011.
  2. Bleicher, A., Schlaich, M., Schauer, T.. Multimodal and multivariable active vibration control for a footbridge - model-based design and experimental validation. In Proc. of EURODYN2011 8th International Conference on Structural Dynamics, Leuven, Belgium, 2011.
  3. Bleicher, A., Schauer, T., Valtin, M., Raisch, J., Schlaich, M.. Active vibration control of a light and flexible stress ribbon footbridge using pneumatic muscles. In Preprints of the 18th IFAC World Congress, pages 911–916, Milan, Italy, 2011.

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