Structural Dynamics and Adaptive Structures Lab
This laboratory is the largest of the Penn State Center for Acoustics and Vibration's facilities, measuring nearly 1000 square feet. The laboratory is used primarily for experiments and houses a wide variety of equipment, including a small machine shop and electronics shop.
The laboratory provides an extensive array of transducers, power supplies, signal conditioners, data acquisition equipment (including conventional spectrum analyzers and several multi-channel Fast Fourier Transform analyzers), an SMS modal analysis system that interacts with these analyzers, several PCs, and a wide range of modern instrumentation such as accelerometers, micro-phones, sound pressure level meters, shakers, and impact testing kits. An LCR meter is available for measuring the electrical impedance of piezo-structures over a broad range of frequencies.
The laboratory also contains a large vibration testing pad and an overhead crane for moving large pieces of equipment. In addition, there is a full range of computer technology available, including laser printers, color printers and scanners, and digital cameras. There is access to the University computer network and the Internet access grid.
Nano-/Micro-engineered Materials Lab
Research in the Nano-/micro-engineered Materials Lab focuses on experimental studies on carbon nanotubes, polymer nano-composites, and nano-porous ceramics. The lab’s primary goals are to obtain knowledge on multi-scale structure-property relationship and to establish scalable manufacturing technologies.
Within the lab, researchers synthesize carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and process them so the CNTs can be dispersed and magnetically assembled in a polymer matrix to form CNT-polymer nanocomposites. Researchers also study how micro-structures influence interlaminar strength of the nanocomposites, while evaluating the scalability of magnetic assembly. Similar studies are done on nano-porous ceramics and their fracture toughness.
Composites Manufacturing Technology Center
The Composites Manufacturing Technology Center (CMTC) serves as the focal point of inter-departmental research and education in advanced structural composites at the University Park Campus in the College of Engineering. Housed in a 15,000 sq. ft. laboratory are modern facilities for fabrication, characterization, and performance evaluation of laboratory-scale and full-scale composite structures.
Approximately 10 to 15 faculty work with students on composites-related research projects in the CMTC Laboratory. In addition, graduate laboratory classes on polymer composites, experimental stress analysis, and related characterization methods are taught in the laboratory.
Visit the CMTC website to learn more.