Vibration isolation by exploring bio-inspired structural nonlinearity

Zhijing Wu, Xingjian Jing, Jing Bian, Fengming Li, Robert Allen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

144 Citations (Scopus)


� 2015 IOP Publishing Ltd. Inspired by the limb structures of animals/insects in motion vibration control, a bio-inspired limb-like structure (LLS) is systematically studied for understanding and exploring its advantageous nonlinear function in passive vibration isolation. The bio-inspired system consists of asymmetric articulations (of different rod lengths) with inside vertical and horizontal springs (as animal muscle) of different linear stiffness. Mathematical modeling and analysis of the proposed LLS reveal that, (a) the system has very beneficial nonlinear stiffness which can provide flexible quasi-zero, zero and/or negative stiffness, and these nonlinear stiffness properties are adjustable or designable with structure parameters; (b) the asymmetric rod-length ratio and spring-stiffness ratio present very beneficial factors for tuning system equivalent stiffness; (c) the system loading capacity is also adjustable with the structure parameters which presents another flexible benefit in application. Experiments and comparisons with existing quasi-zero-stiffness isolators validate the advantageous features above, and some discussions are also given about how to select structural parameters for practical applications. The results would provide an innovative bio-inspired solution to passive vibration control in various engineering practice.
Original languageEnglish
Article number056015
JournalBioinspiration and Biomimetics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2015


  • bio-inspired structures
  • nonlinear stiffness
  • vibration control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)


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