Enhancing the isolation performance by a nonlinear secondary spring in the Zener model

Xing Wang, Hongxiang Yao, Gangtie Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)
413 Downloads (Pure)


In order to obtain an isolator with low resonance amplitude as well as good isolation performance at high frequencies, this paper explores the usage of nonlinear stiffness elements to improve the transmissibility efficiency of a sufficient linear damped vibration isolator featured with the Zener model. More specifically, we intend to improve its original poor high-frequency isolation performance and meanwhile maintain or even reduce its already low resonance amplitude by adding a nonlinear secondary spring into the isolator. Its isolation performances are evaluated under two input scenarios namely force transmissibility under force input and displacement transmissibility under base excitations, respectively. Thereafter, both analytical and numerical study is performed to compare the high-frequency transmissibility as well as resonance condition of the nonlinear isolator with its corresponding linear one. Results show that the introduction of nonlinear secondary spring in the Zener model can achieve an ideal improvement, i.e., reducing the transmissibility at high frequencies and meanwhile suppressing the resonance amplitude. It is also shown that both force and displacement transmissibility of the nonlinear Zener model decreases at the rate of 40dB/decade at high frequencies, which has not been achieved by the isolators with rigidly connected linear or nonlinear damper. As nonlinear spring is easier to fabricate and can have wider range choices of nonlinear parameters than a nonlinear damper, this new model can promote practical applications of such nonlinear vibration isolators.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2483–2495
Number of pages13
JournalNonlinear Dynamics
Issue number4
Early online date30 Nov 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017


  • Nonlinear isolator
  • Zener model
  • Vibration transmissibility


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