The theory of the Markoff process and the associated Fokker-Planck equation is used to investigate the large vibrations of beams and plates with arbitrary boundary conditions subjected to while-noise excitation. An expression for the joint probability-density function of the first N-coefficients of series expansions of the middle surface displacements is obtained. Detailed calculations presented for simply supported beams and plates show that the probability-density function of the modal amplitudes is non-Gaussian and statistically dependent. Numerical computations for the plate indicate a significant reduction of the mean-squared displacement for values of the parameters well inside the range of practical considerations. Furthermore, for the square plate, the percent reduction is greatest.

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