An energy method is employed to analyze a nonhomogeneous, damped plate composed of an elastic (metal) layer and an unconstrained viscoelastic layer. This analysis is limited to the case of thin plates subject to no constraints and vibrating freely in the fundamental mode. The theory developed enables one to predict the damped natural frequency and the rate of decay (in terms of logarithmic decrement) of the transverse vibrations of a composite plate of given dimensions and composed of two particular materials. Experimental measurements bear out the fact that theoretical predictions are indeed accurate. Plates with two symmetric viscoelastic coatings are also considered and their damping effects are compared to those of coatings applied to one side only.

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