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The University of Southampton

ISVR6139 Active Control of Sound and Vibration

Module Overview

This module is to understand the physics of active control. Active control is a method for attenuating undesirable disturbances by introducing secondary sources, whose outputs interfere with the disturbance destructively. Techniques for modelling and analysis of active control of sound and vibration problems will be presented. The feasibility of active control will be demonstrated in a variety of industrial applications.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • Understand the equations that govern the propagation of sound in a stationary mediumactive control of sound in ducts.
  • Develop receptance method for feedback control.
  • Understand nonlinear control strategies and their potential applications.
  • Understand multivariable feedback control system.
  • Formulate independent modal space control.
  • Understand the fundamentals of harmonic control.
  • Apply active structural acoustic control.
  • Formulate single channel control systems.
  • Understand and formulate active control of freefield sound field.
  • Understand and formulate active control of enclosed sound fields.
  • Understand the principle of single-channel control systems.
  • Formulate multi-channel feedforward of tones and random disturbances.
  • Analyse stability in feedback control.
  • Understand and analyse performance and robustness of feedback systems.
  • Understand how active headsets work.
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Able to write simple computer programs and reports.
  • Able to Apply critical analysis and evaluation skills.
  • Able to read, understand and interpret scientific papers.
  • Able to synthesise information from a range of sources.
  • Able to communicate clearly in written reports.
Subject Specific Practical Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Develop simple control algorithms to control both sound and vibration through simulation.
  • Select an appropriate control strategy.
  • Develop simulation models to predict the behaviour of the system under control.
  • Read and understand user documentation for commercial codes.
Cognitive Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Define the equations which govern feedback and feedforward control strategies.
  • Obtain active control solutions for simple benchmark problems.
  • Be able to assess the suitability of different control strategies for a wide range of practical applications.
  • Be able to further develop and apply the control algorithms presented in the course to other areas.


• Active control of plane waves in ducts. • Strategies for active control including reflection and absorption. • The use of quadratic optimisation in determining the performance of control systems. • The principles of single-channel control systems for tonal and random signals. • The use of the LMS algorithm in active control systems. • Active control of freefield sound. • Multichannel control of tones and random disturbances. • Active control of enclosed sound fields. • Active structural acoustic control using integrated actuators and sensors. • Stability, performance and robustness of feedback systems. • Active headsets. • Active vibration isolation systems. • Active control of waves in structures. • Adaptive signal processing and identification. • Control of nonlinear systems. • Modal control.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Series of lectures, Laboratory sessions. Problem based-learning – Simulation in Matlab using measured data.

Completion of assessment task21
Practical classes and workshops9
Follow-up work24
Preparation for scheduled sessions24
Wider reading or practice24
Total study time150



MethodPercentage contribution
Continuous Assessment 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Set Task 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Linked modules

Pre-requisite ISVR2041 OR SESM3030

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