Structural acoustics

Structural acoustics can be viewed as a particular case of fluid-structure interaction, where the vibrating structure generates a sound pressure field in the surrounding compressible field. In the general case, the reaction of the acoustic field on the structure has to be taken into account, and the fluid-structure system is coupled. In certain cases, as for heavy and rigid structures, the vibratory and acoustic problems can be decoupled with some limiting assumptions with regard to the amplitude and frequency domains under consideration.

Our main research interest on structural aoustics at UME is focused on complex structures: the complexity might be due to the geometry (presence of ribs, curvature), to materials (metals, wood, polymers) including accurate modeling of dissipation, to particular loading, and/or to specific ranges of amplitude and frequency. The tackled problems find applications in musical acoustics (musical instrument modeling), transportation acoustics (cars, train, ship), energy systems and psychoacoustics (sound synthesis). Our approach consists mainly in developing and solving time-domain models of sound sources. The solutions obtained can be heard, which allows an auditory evaluation of the models and a kind of “measure” of the “perceptual distance” with real sources.

This research axis has not only strong links with fluid-structure interaction, but also with nonlinear vibrations, as shown by recent advances in the modeling of loudspeakers and piano strings. The modeling of dissipation phenomena and the function of losses also is a central question for all members of the DFA team. In the near future, the interaction of structure with turbulent loading will also be studied.