A novel oil-free elastic damping support for rotor system is presented here which is combined of Elastic Ring (ER) and Metal Rubber (MR) named ERMR support for short. The ERMR support is an alternative of the traditional elastic damping support combined of squirrel cage and Squeeze Film Damper (SFD). The dynamic characteristics of the support were investigated and discussed, as well as the rotordynamic performances of the rotor system with the ERMR support.

Frequency sweeping experiments with different motion amplitudes were conducted to investigate the dynamic stiffness and damping properties of the support. Results show that both the structural stiffness and equivalent viscous damping of the support decrease significantly with the motion amplitude when the amplitude is smaller than 0.1mm, but tend to reach saturation values when the amplitude is larger. In a wide frequency range (0∼240Hz), the stiffness of the ERMR support shows gradual increasing trend with frequency, while the damping coefficient is approximately inversely proportional to frequency. The loss factor of the support displays nonmonotonic dependency on frequency and motion amplitude and distributes in 0.3–0.75.

Based on the experimental investigation on the dynamic properties of the support, the dynamic tests on the rotor system with an ERMR support were conducted to obtain the dynamic behavior of the system. Under different imbalance exciting forces, the synchronous vibration responses were captured and the mechanical parameters were calculated. The results show that the critical speed remains nearly unchanged with the increase of the imbalance. The stiffness of the rotor system doesn’t exhibit strong nonlinearity, which is quite different from the traditional SFD. In wide rotating speed range, the loss factor of the rotor system distributes in 0.1–0.3, validating the remarkable damping capacity of the ERMR support.

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