In this paper a study of the optimum design of squeeze film dampers for multimode rotors is presented. The optimum design program obtains the best possible damper parameters for a given rotor to satisfy the minimization requirements for the objective function. The objectives are to minimize the amplitude response of the rotor at the critical speed, minimize the force transmitted to the support at the operating speed, or maximize the power dissipated by the damper. A combination of these objectives can also be used, with weighting factors to weigh the importance of each of these objectives. These are the possible objectives for the design of squeeze film dampers for aircraft engine applications. The basis of the optimum design program is an extremely fast algorithm which is able to quickly calculate the unbalance response of a rotor, for circular centered orbits of the journal in the damper. A commercial routine is used for the optimization, and is based on a complex direct search technique. The variation of the optimum clearance, length, and retainer spring stiffness are plotted against various rotor parameters. Recommendations for the design of squeeze film dampers are made. Applications to an aircraft engine illustrate the power of the developed algorithm.

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