The automotive industry has attempted a variety of strategies for reducing Noise, Vibration, and Harshness (NVH). To date, strategies ranging from altered component design to the incorporation of stiffening ribs specifically to reduce vibration have been incorporated. One of the key issues when combatting noise is resonance and when layers of materials all contribute to the overall effect, the resulting noise can be unacceptable.
Adhesive acoustic tapes have proven to be an effective and economical solution. Acoustic tape manufacturer, 3M, says that its sound damping pads not only absorb resonant sound frequencies but help to isolate vibrating panels, acting as elastomeric “bumpers” that prevent noise altogether.
The company manufactures a Vibration Damping Tape that consists of an adhesive, an elastomeric damper, and a layer of aluminum foil. When the elastomer is excited, it is unable to transfer the energy it receives through the foil layer. As a result, the energy is converted to heat and is then dissipated.
The company has also developed 3M VHB tape which can be used as alternative to mechanical fasteners for bonding rigid panels to a frame. The tape’s viscoelastic core works with the inherent rigidity of the panel to reduce vibration and noise.
Reducing friction between components that, for one reason or another, must make contact offers another NVH-reduction opportunity. In this instance, 3M’s Slick Surface Tapes combine polyethylene and Teflon to address the issue.
Finally, 3M’s Thinsulate Acoustic Insulation is suitable where sound absorption is the primary function of the tape. The use of tapes allows manufacturers to reduce the cost and the complexity of their designs while still attaining the NVH targets that provide consumers and their passengers with a more comfortable, quieter ride.