DMA: Polymeric Foam Immersed in Fluid Media

Polymeric foam components are widely used for vibration reduction in various engineering applications. Since the dynamic mechanical properties are strongly dependent on the environmental conditions, it can be desirable to test foam specimens while being immersed in oil.


Polymeric flexible foam materials are widely used as damping materials in machinery and construction, primarily in order to reduce unwanted system vibrations and noise generation[1][2]. Due to the viscoelastic behavior of polymers paired with the high compressibility of soft polymeric foams, their damping properties are strongly dependent on the overall loading situation. This includes mechanical loading combined with the specific ambient service conditions. Stiffness and damping behavior of foams usually show a characteristic dependence on the magnitude of mean and oscillatory contributions of stress and strain. Moreover, external influences in service such as media contact may significantly change the dynamic mechanical property profile, which has to be known for reliable service performance.

In the present study, dynamic mechanical investigations were performed on a polymeric soft foam material in the unconditioned initial state as well as in an oil-saturated state, which is relevant for specific applications in machinery construction. By using an immersion cup, which can be modularly attached to regular measuring systems, it was possible to test the foam specimens in oil immersion, providing material data closely related to the real service conditions.


1. Corsaro, R.D., Sperling, L.H. Sound and Vibration Damping with Polymers. American Chemical Society, Washington DC (1990).

2. Sonnenschein, M.F. Polyurethanes: Science, Technology, Markets and Trends. Wiley, New Jersey (2014).

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