On contact-induced standing waves in rotating tires: experiment and theory

Joseph Cusumano
Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics
Penn State

Abstract: An experimental and theoretical study of standing waves in a rotating tire is presented. A test setup for studying small balloon tires is described. Experimental observations of standing waves arising after a critical speed transition are presented, including measurements of the spatial structure of the standing waves. A simple model for the tire is developed, which has a single degree of freedom at each radial location. Steady state solutions at any rotation speed are governed by a nonlinear boundary value problem, which is studied analytically and in detail. The formation of standing waves is accompanied by the appearance of a shock which is regularized by higher order spatial derivatives in the differential operator. The analysis is shown to agree well with the experimental observations. Based on the analysis, a method for suppressing the standing waves is proposed and confirmed experimentally.