Ultra Hard Mount Active Vibration Control

Improving the performance of ultra hard mount systems using vibration control strategies

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High-precision mechatronic equipment often benefits from or even needs vibration isolation to function within specification. Examples of such equipment include metrology devices, space instrumentation and lithography assemblies. Vibration isolation is often the function of the mounting between the equipment and the floor or rest of the machine. An important factor for vibration isolation is the stiffness of this mount. High stiffness mounts result in high force disturbance rejection, at the cost of sensitivity to indirect disturbances. So-called ultra hard mount systems take advantage of ultra high stiffness to offer superior position stability in the presence of force disturbances. However, this also leads to an emphasized sensitivity to indirect disturbances. Active vibration control can be used to overcome this. Feedback is used to dampen the resonance mode of the mounting system. Feedforward is used to lower the transmissibility, resulting in reduced sensitivity to indirect disturbances. This has been successfully implemented on less stiff hard mount systems in the past, but the techniques remained unexplored on ultra hard mount systems. This research focusses on the experimental implementation of existing active vibration control techniques on an ultra hard mount system. It was found that the closed loop behaviour of piezo-based ultra hard mount systems are well predictable. Furthermore, it was found that good damping performance can be achieved by various methods, reducing the output vibrations up to 60%. Using straightforward stiffness compensation feedforward, the influence of indirect disturbances was shown to be reduced significantly. A reduction of 94% in the effect of indirect disturbances was realized using disturbance feedforward when compared to the uncontrolled case. This work shows that ultra hard mounts can be used in applications where strong direct disturbance rejection is required, even in the presence of indirect disturbances using a combined feedback and feedforward approach.