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Accelerometers, Sensors & Data Acquisition Cards etc are expensive and highly delicate
instruments. They have to be handled carefully without impact or shock. The electrical
connections of these devices must be carefully implemented. If in doubt, please clarify with
Lab personnel before going ahead with the experiment.

Study of Mechanisms - Balancing of Slider Crank Mechanism

Aim: To study the horizontal and vertical accelerations of the slider crank mechanism,
the effect of balancing mass, the frequency components of the vibration signals.

1. Theory of Slider Crank



M =1 kg


M r 2 cos

m=balancing mass

m r 2cos

m r 2 sin

Fig.1 Slider crank with balancing mass.

In the above figure, M is the slider (mass 1kg), AB is the connecting rod, BD is the crank
and CD is the radius of the balancing mass m (0.5kg). Link CD has a mass of 0.1 kg.
The approximate equation for acceleration in a slider crank, rotating at uniform angular
velocity at time t is given by,
cos 2t
where =t, and n is the ratio of connecting rod length to crank length.
a(t ) r 2 (cos t


The inertia force in the horizontal axis caused by the mass M of the piston is,

F (t ) Mr 2 cos t Mr 2

cos 2t
... Primary+Secondary components


Important Observations from the Experiment:

(1) The FFT of the accelerations reveal frequencies corresponding to , 2 , 3 etc.
2 N

rad / s N RPM

(2) The effect of balancing mass m at a radius r is to create a horizontal force FH(t)=
mr 2 cos t opposing the primary horizontal force F(t) . The horizontal component is
now reduced to (M m)r 2 cos t . But a new unbalanced vertical component is
introduced mr 2 sin t . This is reflected in the FFTs of the horizontal and vertical
accelerations after balancing mass is attached.
(3) As increases, inertia forces increase as 2.

The setup consist of the following apparatus,ss

Slider crank mechanism with balancing weight.

3 Phase AC induction motor, 2250 RPM, with reduction gear of 1:6.
Variable frequency motor speed controller.
Two Accelerometers (0.5-10kHz, Kistler) in the horizontal and vertical directions
Two Accelerometer power units (9V battery powered)
One RPM sensor of the non-contact inductive type (5V battery powered).
One RPM Indicator.
8 Channel NI data acquisition card (model No. 8009) with 14 bit input resolution.
PC with Dewetron signal processing software.

Accelerometers: Model No: 8702B50

Specification/Product No.
Measuring Range
Frequency Range

+ 50 g
0.5 to 10k Hz
8.7 grams
+ 100 mV/G

Operating Temperature Range

- 55 to 100 C
20 to 30 V


Power Unit: Model No. 5110

Specification/Product No.
Measuring Range
Frequency Range

Operating Temperature Range


0.1 to 60k Hz

- 10 to 54 C
9V alkaline Battery

National Instruments USB Card (No. 6009)

Specification/Product No.
Measuring Range
Analog Input
Input Resolution
Sampling Rate

Output Resolution

8 SE/4 DI

RPM sensor & Indicator:

Speed Sensor (proximity sensor) :
Type : Inductive, PNP Counting type
Diameter : M12
Diameter of Induction surface: less tham 2.5
Power supply : DC , 5 V
Reverse Polarity Proof
High Switching Frequency

RPM Indicator :
Type : Proximity to Voltage Converter
Output Range : 10 Voltage
Power Supply 230 Voltage
Excitation voltage : 5 V to Proximity

4. Experimental Procedure:
a. Connections
The accelerometers (vertical and horizontal) are connected to the input sockets of the
DC power supply unit (type 5110). The output signal from the power supply units are
connected to the USB port, which leads to the 8 channel NI card. The RPM sensor is
also likewise connected to NI card. Thus three channels of the NI card are used. The
output data are acquired by a LabView based program which captures and display the
time domain signal of the vibration and also can calculate the FFT.

b. Slider Crank measurements (RPM must not exceed 350)

1. The PC is started and the Dewetron software is opened. In the setup menu, the
channels of the three sensors are checked to be active (Channel 0=Vertical

Accelerometer, Channel 1=Horz accelerometer, Channel 2= RPM sensor. Then

the Overview menu is activated to see the time domain signals from the sensors.
2. Without Balancing Mass: Ensure the slider is properly lubricated before starting
the mechanism using the motor speed control. Without the balancing mass, the
RPM of the motor is brought up to a moderate value (say N=200 RPM). The
value of primary excitation frequency f (Hz) is calculated from N using the
equations 3a,b.
3. The time domain signals with the horz and vertical sensors are noted. Whereas the
horizontal signals how marked periodicity (being the reciprocating inertia force in
Eq. 2), the vertical ones may show only random noise. Using the screen capture
option, the plot of signal for a particular time interval can be stored. The interval
between the periodic pulses are checked against the excitation period (T= ).
4. The FFTs of a proper time interval of the signal are calculated, using the
Analyze menu. FFT of the horz signal will show sharp frequency components
at f2, f3,f4 etc. FFT of vertical signal will show random frequencies.
5. With Balancing Mass: The balancing mass of 0.5kg is added to the balancing
arm and steps 2,3,4 repeated. As per Fig.1, this balancing mass must neutralize
the first frequency component ( f ) in the horizontal axis by 50%. Also as per
Fig.1 the balancing mass introduces a new unwanted vertical component at
frequency f. This should be reflected in the FFTs of the vertical and horizontal
6. The experiment can be repeated at another rpm, say N=340, with and without
balancing mass. As (or f) increases the magnitude of the acceleration
components must increase as the square of . The conclusions regarding the
effect of balancing mass on frequency would be the same as in steps 3,4 and 5.

5.Sample Results
Here RPM (N)=240;
=25.1 rad/s, f = 4Hz.
The primary frequency components are 4, 8 , 16 .Hz etc. These are clearly seen in
Fig 2.a FFT of Horz signal (without balancing mass). Whereas Fig 2.b shows only
some random frequency corresponding to vertical signal.

Amplitude (g)



(a) FFT of Horz. signal


(b) FFT of Vert. signal

Without Balancing Mass

Fig.2 a, b

Amplitude (g)

First peak



(a) FFT of Horz. signal


(b) FFT of Vert. signal

With Balancing Mass

Fig.3 a, b