Hardware Facilities

We have access to an extensive range of state-of-the-art software and hardware costing over £1M for experimental and analytical investigations of vibrations of civil structures and biodynamics. Our facilities are constantly adapted and upgraded by both the company and the University of Sheffield for fundamental and applied research, as well as for commercial work. As a result, our facilities are the most advanced in the UK for vibration testing and analysis of large civil engineering structures.

The most versatile dynamic excitation in Europe

Our APS electrodynamic shakers are capable of exciting structures with frequencies up to 100Hz using a variety of signals, such as harmonic, random and chirp, mounted vertically or horizontally, depending on application. When operating horizontally, our shakers offer over 1kN of measurable dynamic force amplitude down to 0.5Hz, which is the lowest in Europe and suitable for exciting tall and long structures.

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Sensor selection – solving a key problem in civil engineering

Less than 1% of all vibration transducers are capable of measuring low frequency and low level vibrations whilst being robust enough for field operation. This is a typical requirement when measuring vibrations of civil engineering structures. Most vibration transducers are tuned to higher-frequency, higher-level vibrations in mechanical and aerospace applications. We offer a carefully selected and extensively tested range of highly sensitive robust accelerometers which are suitable for all civil engineering applications. These are fully equipped with suitable signal conditioning and robust cabling and housing solutions for field operation on full-scale civil structures.

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Portable data acquisition

We use a range of portable data acquisition devices, including a flagship Data Physics Mobilyzer II spectrum analyser with 24 No. 24-bit input channels and 4 independent output channels.

Biomechanics

We have access to a suite of biodynamics facilities, including a rare fully instrumented triaxial treadmill, force plates and Codamotion motion capture to study human motion and the corresponding forces applied to civil structures. For more information on our facilities, follow the link to the facilities pages of the Vibration Engineering Section at The University of Sheffield.

Bespoke systems for remote vibration monitoring, automatic parameter estimation and reporting

We have developed several vibration monitoring systems which are robust and suitable for long term commercial use. These include highly sensitive accelerometers, signal conditioning and analogue to digital conversion, remote video monitoring, pedestrian counting and environmental sensing. We can also combine the measured vibration data with quasi-static structural data. A special unique feature in these systems is automatic on-line parameter estimation and non-stop hourly reporting of modal data correlated with measured vibration response levels and other ambient data.