Vrije Universiteit Brussel

National and international collaborations

Academic relations – VUB Internal

  • Dept. ELEC (TW-VUB): Electrical Engineering
    The main research activity of the department ELEC is the development of new measurement techniques using advanced signal processing methods and tools. Fundamental research is done in the area of linear and non-linear systems identification in the frequency domain. Some of the theoretical and fundamental theories developed at the department ELEC were generalized to multivariable systems and adapted by the Acoustics & Vibration Research Group for applications in mechanical engineering. During the last years the Acoustics & Vibration Research Group was involved in Belgian and European projects together with Prof. Johan Schoukens (ELEC) and Prof. Rik Pintelon (ELEC). Thanks to the fact that dr. Steve Vanlanduit and myself did our PhD at the department ELEC, a good relationship exists between the dept. ELEC and MECH. This will continue and result in even more fruitful cooperation over the coming years.

  • Dept. MEMC (TW-VUB): Material and Construction Mechanics
    The department MEMC does research in the use of mixed experimental-numerical methods to identify the properties of composite materials. Modal analysis is one of the tools used in their research to identify composite materials and to update their numerical finite elements models. A close collaboration exists with Prof. Hugo Sol of the department MEMC. During the last years common master theses and FWO projects were done in the field of damage detection in composite materials, the design of new railway dampers and operational modal techniques. We intend to have more common research activities in the field of, for example, finite elements model updating by modal analysis, inverse method to identify damage in structures, the design of new railway dampers and sleepers.

  • Research group : Fluid Mechanics
    The last decade more intensive research is done in the field of alternative energy sources such as wind energy. Wind energy is again a hot research topic in Belgium since our government consider the installation of wind turbines on high masts in the sea. These mast and turbines are subjected to random vibrations due to the waves and wind excitation. Besides these vibrations, a harmonic vibration due to e.g. an unavoidable small unbalance of the rotor will be present. Operational and combined identification methods can be used to investigate these vibration problems and to derive models. Structural health monitoring of these structures can increase their lifetime and reliability. In 1997, we worked together with the dept. STRO in the framework of a European project “Development of design tools for reduced Aerodynamic noise wind turbines” (DRAW) - EG JOULE III - program, JOR3-CT95-00832 (coordinator: Universteit van Stuttgart). The Department STRO recently joined the department of mechanical engineering. This will further improve the exciting collaboration between the Acoustics & Vibrattion Research Group and the Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics Research Group. Prof. Steve Vanlanduit is member of both research groups.

  • Dept. COPR (GF-VUB): Dental surgery department of the faculty of medical sciences
    In collaboration with Prof. Kristiaan Collys of the COPR department research is done for the design of mouthguards to protect the teeth and prevent injuries during sport activities. Our testing facilities are used by Ernest Kloeg (PhD student at COPR) to obtain the modal parameters and the force distribution of different types of mouthguards. These results will be used to optimise the design of new mouthguards.

Academic Relations – National

  • Dept. PMA (TW-KULeuven): Mechanical Engineering
    We established a close cooperation with Prof. Jan Swevers and Prof. Ward Heylen from the PMA department of the KULeuven. This good relationship has lead to common projects and publications. Common measurements and informal discussions resulted in a win-win situation for both departments. Many times members of the PMA department joined Ph.D. dissertation juries of members of the Acoustics & Vibration Research Group.

  • Dept. SISTA (TW-KULeuven): Signals, Identification, System Theory and Automation
    During the FLITE project a good relationship was set up between Prof. Bart De Moor and other researchers from the SISTA-ESAT department. Monthly meetings between the Flemish FLITE partners (VUB, KULeuven and LMS International) resulted in a cross fertilization between our and their researchers. Since they use time-domain subspace methods instead of the frequency domain methods, it is very interesting for both of us to learn the advantages and disadvantages of each other’s techniques.

  • Department of Agriculture and Economics (KULeuven): Agricultural Engineering
    A common research project about the design of sprayer booms for agriculture applications gave us the opportunity to work together with dr. Jan Anthonis of the department of Agriculture and Economics of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. Together we did measurements in their laboratory on a sprayer boom attached to a tractor. This project showed us the need to do further research in linear and non-linear operational techniques.

  • Dept of Applied Mechanics, Royal Military School (KMS): Mechanical Engineering
    Kristof Harri of the Royal Military School (KMS) is doing his Ph.D. in our research group. He graduated as a mechanical engineer at the KMS. Besides his research, he is also a teaching assistant at the KMS. Because he splits his time between the KMS and the VUB, a good relationship was established with the KMS.

  • Department of Electrical Energy Engineering, RUG: Electrotechnical Engineering, Department of Information Technology, RUG: Acoustic Engineering
    Our research in “Coupled electromagnetic-vibro-acoustical Modelling of Electromagnetic Systems” happens in collaboration with Prof. Jan Melkebeek, Prof. Luc Dupre, dr. Lieven Vandevelde and Prof. Dick Botteldooren from the RUG. This project allows us to validate our current techniques on other systems than typical mechanical structures such as e.g. high voltage transformers. More specific this problem requires the combination of knowledge of different research areas like vibrations, electromagnetic phenomena and acoustics. Furthermore Prof. Dick Botteldooren was a member of the Ph.D. dissertation jury of dr. Luk Dedene and promoter of master theses at the department MECH.

  • Subfaculty of Sciences, KULAK
    In the future common research topics about non-destructive testing will be one of the subjects of research together with Prof. Koen Van Den Abeele from KULAK. In this context the Acoustics & Vibration Research Group is also a partner in the expression of interest for the 6-th framework program of the EU: “Health monitoring of aircraft by Nonlinear Elastic Wave Spectroscopy (NEWS) techniques”.

Academic Relations – International

  • The FLITE project initiated collaborations and contacts with Prof. Albert Benveniste (IRISA, France), Prof. Michèle Basseville (IRISA, France), Prof. Maurice Goursat (INRIA, France) and Prof. Tadeusz Uhl (University of Krakow, Poland). With all these people we had interested discussions about our and their work leading to new ideas and a common website. A special session will be organised at the IFAC SYSID conference in August 2003 (Rotterdam) to present the research of the different FLITE partners.

  • In the context of the SLAT TRACK project we have contacts with the Department of Applied Mechanics (University of Paderborn, Germany). This department has a lot of experience with numerical crack growth analysis based on finite element calculations.

  • Thanks to our membership in the ICCoS (Identification and control of complex systems) scientific research network, we have contacts with many different international authorities like Prof. Michel Gevers (UCL), Prof. Keith Godfrey (University of Warwick, UK) and Prof. Lennart Ljung (Linköping University, Sweden), all leading persons in the field of control and identification. See this link for more information about ICCoS.

  • Moreover, we are coordinating a scientific research network OPTIMESS. The main objectives of the scientific research network “OPTIMESS” (OPTIcal MEasurement techniques for Structures and Systems) are (i) to improve collaboration and communication in the broad field of optical measurement techniques among the Flemish and international research partners; (ii) to enhance optical measurement techniques based on the fusion of the complementary expert knowledge available at the participating research institutes; and (iii) to stimulate new opportunities for international cooperation. See this link for more information about OPTIMESS.

  • Furthermore we have good contacts with Prof. Francesco Benedettini (University of l'Aquila, Italy), Prof. Nuno Maia (Universitade Técnica de Lisboa, Portugal), Prof. Enrico Primo Tomasini (Ancona University, Italy), Prof. Jan Wright and Prof. Jonathan Cooper (University of Manchester, UK), Prof. Roberto Arruda (University of Campinas, Brazil), Prof. David Rees (University of Glamorgan, UK), ...

Industrial Relations

  • LMS international N.V.
    LMS International is worldwide market leader in test systems and prototype simulation software for engineering applications like acoustics, vibrations and reliability. Constructors in automotive, aerospace and aeronautics industry and in mechanical industry worldwide use LMS technology. The Acoustics & Vibration Research Group established a close long-term relationship with the R&D department of LMS international. Several projects in the past (HOLOMODAL, SALOME, IWT post-doc Patrick Guillaume) and today (FLITE, SLAT TRACK) proof the interest of LMS international in the techniques developed by members of our group. Today one of the key methods, the Maximum Likelihood Estimator, implemented by Prof. Patrick Guillaume is commercially available in the LMS software package. This close collaboration gives the Acoustics & Vibration Research Group the opportunity to participate in many industrial projects, to get in contact with other important firms e.g. AIRBUS, DASSAULT and to distribute and valorise our techniques. Mainly we have contacts with dr. Herman Van der Auweraer, dr. Bart Peeters, ir. Antonio Vecchio, dr. Patrick Vandeponseele, dr. Thierry Olbrechts and dr. Marleen Adams.

  • ASCO Industries N.V.
    ASCO Industries has the ambition to be world market leader in the high precision technology of high-strength materials e.g. maraging steel and titanium for aircraft industry. ASCO is a specialist in the co-development, design, machining, processing and certified assembly of complex, high- strength aircraft components (flaps and slats mechanisms, engine mounts, landing gear components, etc.). Together with the Acoustics & Vibration Research Group and LMS international they initiated the IWT SLAT-TRACK project. The aim of this project is to redesign the slat track. All the durability tests take place in our laboratory where 3 new test rigs were installed. This project expands our research activities and knowledge in the field of damage detection, life prediction and redesign of safety critical aeroplane components. Mainly we have contact with ir. Geert Van der Linden, ir. Guido Van Den Berghe and Prof. ir. Jef Maes. Jef Maes is, besides the commercial director of ASCO Industries, also part-time lecturer at the department MECH.

  • Dynamic Design Solutions (“DDS”)
    Dynamic Design Solutions is an independent and privately owned developer of CAE software tools for a growing number of applications that exploit the combined use of experimental test data and finite element analysis data. Dynamic Design Solutions is a technology leader in Finite Element (FE) model updating using static or dynamic reference test data. Today some informal contacts exist with the people from DDS. In the future we want to collaborate with ir. Eddy Dascotte (CEO of DDS) since our research will be expanded to the updating process.

  • Pauwels Contracting
    Pauwels Contracting has been manufacturing for 20 years mobile substations and is a world leader on the global market. The approach for the mechanical design of those units has been always empirical based on assembly shop experience. The goal of the IWT research project is to analyse in depth the mechanical design of mobile substations and to develop adequate design rules and design tools to choose and dimension properly the supporting structures in order to guarantee the mechanical integrity of the equipment during transport and service operation.

  • Other industrial partners
    In the framework of EU projects, we have contacts with BMW, PSA, FIAT, AIRBUS, DASSAULT, NMBS, PZL, SOPEMEA and STEINBICHLER, …
    We also have good contacts with Flanders’ Drive, WTCM, and FMTC.


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