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The University of Southampton

Structural Dynamics and Vibro-acoustics

Our research covers the vibration behaviour of structures and the resulting sound radiation. We deal with vibration over a very wide range of frequencies from a few Hz up to ultrasonic frequencies in the MHz region. We have a particular emphasis on audio frequency applications including the radiation of sound from structural vibration.

Our activities in structural dynamics and vibro-acoustics extend from fundamental theoretical studies, through the development of numerical tools and experimental measurement techniques to specific engineering applications. These applications include road, rail, aerospace and marine vehicles and structures, buildings, machinery and humans. We have a strong interest in ground vibration from trains as well as the detection of underground objects and pipe vibration.

Our theoretical approaches include:

  • Numerical methods such as the Finite Element and Boundary Element methods
  • Analytical methods such as the dynamic stiffness method and receptance methods
  • Non-linear vibration including self-excited vibration
  • Methods for higher frequencies such as Statistical Energy Analysis
  • Methods for mid frequencies such as Component Mode Synthesis and Wave/FE
  • Methods for dealing with variability in structural response
  • Methods based on experimental data including structural health monitoring, model validation and updating and force identification
  • Methods for the study of elastic waveguides
  • Vibration and vibro-acoustics of porous and cellular media
  • Asymptotic analysis

Our experimental facilities include extensive vibration measurement equipment (shakers, accelerometers, instrumented hammers, laser vibrometers)

Our research covers many methods for controlling vibration including

  • Vibration isolation including non-linear isolation
  • Tuned absorbers and neutralisers including tuneable devices
  • Active and semi-active control of vibration
  • Damping
Vibration testing laboratory

We maintain a well-equipped general purpose vibration testing laboratory which is used extensively for research, teaching and enterprise activities.  The lab can accommodate large built-up structures such as a full automotive vehicle and is equipped to test over frequencies of a few Hz to MHz.

Equipment includes:

  • 1D scanning laser vibrometer (Polytec PSV300)
  • Single point laser vibrometer (Polytec)
  • Data acquisition systems and frequency analysers
    • Three 4-channel analysers (Data Physics Quattro)
    • Two 8-channel analysers (Data Physics Mobilizer II)
    • One 8-channel modal testing system (LMS SCADAS)
    • One 4-channel data acquisition system (Prosig P8004)
    • One 32-channel data acquisition system (Prosig P8020)
  • Electrodynamic shakers for modal and qualification testing
    • 10N to 10kN sine peak force
Electrodynamic shaker


  • Range of instrumentation (hammers, force gauges, accelerometers, signal conditioning amplifiers)
  • RF power amplifier for piezoelectric actuation (E&I1020L , 10kHz - 5MHz)


List of related projects to
Related ProjectsStatusType
Mapping the UnderworldDormantOther
Smart MRE Materials and Structures for Adaptive Vibration ControlActiveOther
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