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Shock and Vibration
Volume 11, Issue 3-4, Pages 271-280

Vibroacoustic Optimization of Stiffening Ribs and Damping Material Distribution on Sheet Metal Parts

M. Carfagni, P. Citti, L. Governi, and M. Pierini

Dipartimento di Meccanica e Tecnologie Industriali, Università degli Studi di Firenze, Italy

Received 24 August 2004; Revised 24 August 2004

Copyright © 2004 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Vehicle noise and vibration levels are basic parameters in passenger comfort. Both static and dynamic stiffness of sheet metal parts is commonly increased by means of stiffening ribs. Vibrations are also reduced by adding a layer of damping material on the floor, the roof, the firewall and other parts of the vehicle. In common practice the panels to be treated are ribbed according to criteria based on the designer’s experience, rather than on well defined design procedures and are uniformly covered by a layer of damping material. However, these are not efficient design solutions, especially with regard to the effectiveness of vibration reduction and to weight containment. In this paper a novel approach to achieve an optimal distribution of stiffening ribs and damping material will be presented. The proposed method is based on a Genetic Algorithm (G.A.) procedure which takes into account both the vibroacoustic performance and the weight and cost reduction. A simple case study will be illustrated to demonstrate the capabilities of the developed procedure.