Analysis of an Anti-vibration Glove for Vibration Suppression of a Steering Wheel

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Virginia Tech

Exposure to severe levels of hand-arm vibration can lead to hand-arm vibration syndrome. Towards curbing the development of hand-arm vibration syndrome, studies have shown that anti-vibration gloves effectively reduce the transmission of unwanted vibration from vibrating equipment to the human hand. However, most of these studies have focused on the study of anti-vibration gloves for power tools such as chipping hammers, and not much work has been done to design anti-vibration gloves for steering wheels. Also, as most of these studies are based on experimental or modeling techniques, the level of effectiveness and optimum glove properties for better performance remains unclear. To fill this gap, the dynamics of the hand-arm system, with and without gloves, coupled to a steering wheel is studied analytically in this work. A lumped parameter model of the hand-arm system with hand-tool interaction is modeled as a linear spring-damper system. The model is validated by comparing transmissibility obtained numerically to transmissibility obtained from experiments. The resulting governing equations of motion are solved analytically using the method of undetermined coefficients. Parametric analysis is performed on the biomechanical model of the hand-arm system with and without a glove to identify key design parameters. It is observed that the effect of glove parameters on its performance varies based on the frequency range. This observation further motivates us to optimize the glove parameters, using multi-objective optimization, to minimize the overall transmissibility in different frequency ranges.

Vibration Isolation, Multi-objective Optimization, Anti-vibration Gloves