Flexible supports are used in many aero and automobile industrial applications. They transmit loads, accommodate misalignment, allow axial displacement, ensure no loss of lubricants, absorb shock and dampen vibration, withstand high temperatures, allow easy installation and disassembling. Flexible supports react on connected equipment components when subjected to misalignment and torque. The reaction forces and moments on components due to flexible supports should be within the allowable limits or otherwise it can cause failure of gears, shafts, bearings, and other equipment components.
These flexible supports used in aero engine applications expected to meet design and manufacturing criteria. Flexible supports should have required stiffness values in different directions to meet rotor dynamic stability criteria. Flexible supports also required to meet strength and durability criteria for the given material at the required maximum operating temperature. The designed component should be producible and meet manufacturing limitations.
The main objective of this paper is to optimize single and multiple convolutes types of flexible supports with in the manufacturing limits and in the given design space. A methodology is developed to optimize the components to meet required stiffness, strength and durability criteria. Parametric models of flexible support are developed in UNIGRAPHICS NX9. Design parameters such as overall length, convolute height, convolute radius and angle are considered for the optimization study. ANSYS Workbench is used for the analysis and optimization of flexible support.