The Special Interest Group (SIG) for Vibro-acoustics (SIGVA) is concerned with the sound generated by vibrating sources because of their contact with structures. Vibro-acoustics lies at the interface of acoustics and structural dynamics, and the aim of this SIG is to provide a UK forum to bring together researchers and practitioners in these areas, which often are considered separately, to the detriment of an understanding of the whole process: generation, transmission, propagation and radiation. In industry and consultancy, there is a generally a greater understanding of airborne sound than of structure-borne sound, with better measurement methods, prediction methods and Standards for the former than for the latter. SIGVA will address this shortfall by promoting collaborative research across these disciplines and with industry. This will have impact on a wide range of industries, including the automobile, aerospace, marine, construction and white-goods industries.
Design engineers, noise control engineers and consultants do not address structure-borne noise problems as effectively and confidently as airborne noise problems and there is a shortfall in knowledge of the pre-requisites for control: i.e. methods of characterizing vibrating sources and of predicting the far-field sound pressure resulting from the transmitted vibrations. The vibration transmission is complicated. In addition to the source vibrational activity, the source and receiver structural dynamics must be known in some form. Sources with multiple contacts generate multiple vibration transmission paths, with several degrees of freedom contributing at each contact. The prediction of structure-borne sound propagation through structures requires different approaches depending on frequency, requiring modal approaches at low frequencies and statistical approaches at high frequencies, with the mid-frequency transitional region posing special problems. In addition, structural hyper-sensitivity, i.e. where small changes in source location and geometry generate large variations in response, produces significant variations in measured results and uncertainties in prediction. There is world-leading research activity on this topic in the U.K., with expertise and experience in measurement, numerical and analytical modelling, inverse methods, transfer path analysis, uncertainty estimates and data reduction. The last two are of particular importance to some industries and practitioners who require methods which are not measurement and/or computationally intensive. The SIGVA aims to bring together these research activities and groups, to share and harmonise approaches, and to enhance the impact on industry and practice.
The principal function of the SIGVA is to provide the primary UK forum for persons with an interest in vibro-acoustics. The forum will: (i) share knowledge, expertise and experiences; (ii) raise the profile of vibro-acoustics to national industry, higher education and government institutes; (iii) identify areas of common interest and develop collaborative funded research proposals; (iv) initiate workshops for ECRs and PDF and to attract postgraduates to this important area of acoustics.
The SIGVA will organise workshops, conferences, and other events, for knowledge exchange between researchers, practitioners and end-users. They will identify common problems and set frameworks for future research. In particular, they will highlight the impact and potential of research; provide an overview of current research in this area; identify potential sources of research funding; identify expertise available to support future collaborative research; strengthen international links and collaborations; support short exchanges for ECRs, mature researchers and practitioners, to work in complementary UK academic and commercial organisations.