MIMO vibration tests in the spotlight

By ALEXCarrella

Modern advances in excitation and control systems make Multi-Input-Multi-Output (MIMO) vibration tests the center of attention for both industry and academia. However, even if there is enough progress in the testing equipment when it comes to shakers and controllers that enable this new type of tests, a full scientific understanding of the consequences and how to derive tests specification is still underway.


The University of Ferrara, DongLing and Siemens Digital Industries, each a leader in one of three different domains of research, shaker systems and vibration control and acquisition system respectively, have recently joined forces to start a new activity in the attempt to shed more light on this new technique. The work they shall carry out seeks to answer a series of questions. What are the effects on mechanical fatigue of multi-axis excitation? How do we specify reference profiles for MIMO tests which are equivalent to those prescribed by the standards today? Is this equivalence even plausible?

In the driving seat of this project is the University of Ferrara. Its team of scientists uses the full support of DongLing and its top-of-the-range 3D shaker as well as Siemens Simcenter testing solutions such as Simcenter Testlab for software control and Simcenter SCADAS data acquisition system.

Initial tests carried out in the lab of the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Ferrara, Italy, have shown the full compatibility of the Siemens control system and the DongLing 3D shaker. Using the control software (MIMO Random, MIMO TWR and MIMO Sine) prescribing  accelerations (in time and frequency domain) were reproduced at the control point in the three direction simultaneously.                                      

Professors and researchers working in Ferrara and in Leuven will now have access to a state-of-the-art facility to push the boundaries of the current knowledge of multi-axis fatigue and vibration testing. And more, the University offers a cutting edge testing technology to those industries interested in exploring this more realistic and more efficient method, whether locally and, thanks to Siemens, at global level.  

This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at