“In many cases, Electronic equipment must be designed and engineered to withstand harsh environments. For example, the aircraft’s navigation equipment will not malfunction due to air turbulence. Design engineers often use vibration isolators to meet environmental challenges. Two components that are often used for shock and vibration isolation are elastomer mounts/dampers and spiral vibration isolators.
The spiral vibration isolator can attenuate and dissipate shock and vibration energy, thereby minimizing shock and vibration on the three axes of compression, shear and rolling.
Today, electronic equipment has become the forefront of most industries. Whether it is managing oil or gas operations, navigating a transportation platform, tracking freight or any other type of operational activity, electronic devices can help you get the job done. Unfortunately, electronic devices are sensitive to external conditions and cannot always operate at their best. Therefore, the right equipment is essential to enable electronic systems to withstand vibrations.
In many cases, electronic equipment must be designed and engineered to withstand harsh environments. For example, the aircraft’s navigation equipment will not malfunction due to air turbulence. Design engineers often use vibration isolators to meet environmental challenges. Two components that are often used for shock and vibration isolation are elastomer mounts/dampers and spiral vibration isolators.
Electronic equipment is fragile due to the large number of fragile parts, and it is easy to damage them even if they are subjected to a slight physical shock or continuous vibration. In addition, many components (such as data storage drives) require a controlled environment to function properly. In short, both sudden vibration and continuous vibration can severely damage electronic equipment.
According to the CAVE3 study of Auburn University’s vehicle electronic equipment in extreme environments, almost all electronic equipment will be affected by shock and vibration at a certain moment. Even rugged electronic devices that can withstand a certain degree of shock will eventually fail in harsh environments. Therefore, for electronic devices that overcome the challenges of shock and vibration, external damping is required.
Vibration will greatly reduce the life and durability of parts. Excessive stress can cause some components to become physically weak. For electronic products, this usually requires a lot of replacement costs. The limited service life of a product usually severely affects profits.
Many electronic systems are mission critical. For example, even in extreme situations, control and navigation electronics on military and emergency vehicles need to work. Failures caused by vibration can lead to negative consequences, which are far greater than any repair or replacement costs. Prolonged downtime or unsafe conditions caused by equipment failure make effective vibration isolation critical.
Combine vibration isolators with electronics
Use with equipment Isolators can be used with a variety of electronic equipment to effectively protect them from physical shocks. They can be used to prevent sudden shock pulses and common operating vibrations.
Industries such as transportation, aerospace, military, mining, and gas/oil drilling have used these vibration isolators to protect sensitive critical equipment. Some examples of heavy industry applications are as follows:
Industrial control computer and electronic system
Suppress airborne computers on airplanes and ships
Military decree computer
Electronic equipment in a shipping container
Electronic equipment and instruments for mining/drilling auxiliary vehicles
Some types of physical shocks that can damage electronic equipment include explosions, sustained low frequency vibrations, turbulent weather, earthquakes, resonance frequencies, mechanical vibrations, and impacts or collisions. All these forms of physical shock can be effectively attenuated and reduced by using the correct isolator.
In a paper on harsh harmonic vibrations published in the journal Sound and Vibration, the researchers found that, under ideal conditions, the basic internal components of electronic devices can be isolated individually. This helps protect critical, sensitive components from vibration. They tested this with a wire rope isolator and achieved a significant improvement in damping.
Elastomer mount and isolator
A common method of damping and vibration is to use elastomer mounts. They are made of rubber or other elastic polymers and mainly use the characteristics of the material to prevent energy from being transferred to the device.
The benefit of elastomer mounts is their cost, as they can be relatively cheap. However, elastomer mounts generally degrade over time, exposure and use in the environment. In some applications, these mounting brackets can well reduce the daily vibration that may damage the machine, but may not be effective for larger physical shocks. Depending on the application, elastomer mounts may not be suitable for large, heavy equipment, extreme temperatures, ozone or chemical exposure.
Spiral vibration isolators are one of the most effective and powerful solutions to the vibration challenges of electronic equipment and other machinery. They use aircraft-quality stainless steel wire ropes spirally wound in metal fixed rods to reduce physical impact.
Spiral vibration isolators are available in a variety of sizes.
This form of isolator can be used as a harmonic oscillator. The spiral cable assembly can dampen and dissipate shock and vibration energy. Although no isolator can completely eliminate vibration, a spiral vibration isolator can significantly reduce the transmission of vibration from the mounting surface to the machine or circuit. Spiral vibration isolators are able to minimize the transmitted shock and vibration on all three axes: compression, shear and rolling.
The spiral shock absorber can dampen and dissipate shock and vibration energy.
In addition, the robust materials used in spiral vibration isolators allow them to work effectively in extreme environments. The combination of sturdy, durable structure and efficient design makes spiral vibration isolators the first choice over elastomer isolators.
Spiral vibration isolators minimize shock and vibration on all three axes: compression, shear and rolling.
Advantages of spiral isolators
Although more expensive than its elastomers, spiral isolators have many obvious advantages. Some reasons you might want to consider this solution are as follows:
Robust structure: Its metal structure makes the spiral vibration isolator particularly sturdy. They are hardly affected by harsh environments (including high temperature and high impact).
Low maintenance requirements: Its sturdy structure translates into low maintenance requirements. In addition, unlike the elastomer mount, the material will not be significantly degraded under normal use, so there is almost no need to replace it.
Sufficient isolation: Spiral vibration isolators are very effective in damping shock pulses. This includes all three axes: compression, shearing and rolling. This attribute is particularly important in highly dynamic environments such as ships and airplanes.
Isolation on all axes: What is particularly interesting is that they can inhibit movement on all axes at the same time, thereby providing protection against destructive impact inputs in all directions.
COTS equipment: This arrangement allows designers/engineers to use more readily available off-the-shelf component (COTS) equipment (for example, electronic equipment, computer hardware, optical equipment, etc.) instead of using more expensive dedicated rugged electronic equipment.
Taking these characteristics into consideration, the spiral vibration isolator is particularly effective for dealing with various shock and vibration challenges of electronic equipment. Although different isolator types are ideal in different situations, this type is usually the best choice for the most sensitive and mission-critical equipment.
Edward Jones is the marketing manager of John Evans’ Sons. John Evans’s son is an international manufacturer of constant force springs, constant force spring assemblies, spring reels, spiral vibration isolators, etc. Designers and manufacturers. John Evans’ spiral vibration isolator provides excellent shock and vibration protection.