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Welcome to this installment of MC² on vibration damping and shocks!

Vibration is mechanical oscillation (regular or otherwise) about some equilibrium — prone to becoming problematic in motor-driven motion designs where there’s looseness, backlash, windup, uneven effects from friction, machine-assembly imbalances, or shock loading. Noise is a manifestation of vibration that degrades the perceived quality of machines … and in many cases is an unacceptable byproduct of motion. 

So as we explore in several MC² features, the ultimate goal for design engineers is to build and tune designs for minimal vibration (free or forced) and render unavoidable system vibration damped (dissipated) or isolated. That way, the machine can quickly settle back to equilibrium. We also explore a phenomenon related to that of vibration — that of shock. Check out the below for more.

Lisa Eitel

Executive Editor, Design World

Vibration Damping & Shocks Classroom Sponsored by


Technical  •  Differences  •  Automation  •  Protection

What are negative-stiffness vibration isolators?

Vibration damping: What’s the difference between passive and active methods?

What are shock and vibration absorbers?

Protecting sensitive equipment from harmful vibrations can be done with either passive or active isolation systems, with the choice often being made on price, simplicity, and the level of protection required.

Shock-absorber technologies for automated applications

Motion is present in almost all industrial automation systems. Stopping or changing the direction of that motion releases kinetic energy, which can cause shock and vibration to occur. 

Unlike typical static or dynamic loads, forces due to vibrations are difficult to predict, model, and account for when designing motion control systems. 

Design engineers who employ advanced damping and vibration isolation can vastly improve the performance of their industrial-automation machinery. 

ACE Controls adds online tools and customized solutions


Industrial gas springs help in fight against COVID-19

Gas springs, also called gas dampers, tension springs, gas-pressure springs depending on the setup and context, are compressed-air or oil cylinders that install in motion designs to damp forces and return kinematic linkages and more complicated assemblies to default positions.

ACE Controls dampers improve doors on high-end tractor cabs

Key Dollar Cab manufactures tractor cabs for an array of orchard-farm tractor models. In fact, Key Dollar Cab has been innovating and improving these designs since 1982 — leveraging new technologies to make the cabs ever safer and more comfortable for tractor operators.

ACE Controls now supplies SOL-28 solar dampers

ACE Controls now supplies SOL-28 solar dampers for solar-panel motion designs needing compression and extension forces of 14 to 2,252 lb and strokes of 1.97 to 15.00 in. 

MD&M West: Ace Controls


Technical Focus • Types • Trends • Components

High speeds and output put greater demand on shock and vibration technologies

Shock and vibration-damping technologies ensure smooth and safe designs

Shock + vibration-damping components in motion applications

Trends in shock absorbers for tight spaces and harsh environments

For mission-critical motion systems, any oscillation can cause damage to the machines themselves, the product they’re used to manufacture and the people operating them. 

The move to faster speeds, larger volumes and greater outputs in automated machinery is prompting more use of vibration and shock mitigation technologies.

Shock and vibration-damping components are as varied as the designs in which they work. 

Shock absorbers are used in a wide range of industries as a cost-effective way to protect machines and save money in the long run. 

Your Specialist for Industrial Damping Technology

Ace Controls, founded in 1963, introduced the first adjustable industrial shock absorber. Over 50 years later, ACE is the internationally recognized expert in the field of industrial damping technology. The company’s portfolio now includes automation control, motion control, vibration control and safety products.

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