Electrorheological Dampers, Part I: Analysis and Design

[+] Author and Article Information
H. P. Gavin

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708-0287

R. D. Hanson

FEMA Disaster Field Office, 245 S. Los Robles, Room 630, Pasadena, CA 91102-6020

F. E. Filisko

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

J. Appl. Mech 63(3), 669-675 (Sep 01, 1996) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2823348 History: Received March 10, 1995; Revised March 01, 1996; Online December 04, 2007


Electrorheological (ER) materials are suspensions of specialized, micron-sized particles in nonconducting oils. When electric fields are applied to ER materials, they exhibit dramatic changes (within milli-seconds) in material properties. Pre-yield, yielding, and post-yield mechanisms are all influenced by the electric field. Namely, an applied electric field dramatically increases the stiffness and energy dissipation properties of these materials. A previously known cubic equation which describes the flow of fluids with a yield stress through a rectangular duct can be applied to annular flow, provided that certain conditions on the material properties are satisfied. An analytic solution and a uniform approximation to the solution, for the rectangular duct Poiseuille flow case is presented. A numerical method is required to solve the flow in annular geometries. The approximation for rectangular ducts is extended to deal with the annular duct case.

Copyright © 1996 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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