The need for fast maneuvering and accurate positioning of flexible structures poses a control challenge. The flexibility inherent in these lightly damped systems creates large residual vibrations in response to fast disturbances. Several control approaches have been proposed to tackle this class of problems, of which the input shaping technique seems quite appealing. While input shaping has been widely investigated to attenuate residual vibrations in flexible structures, less attention was granted to expand its viability in further applications. It is therefore the aim of this work to develop a methodology for applying input shaping techniques to suppress sloshing effects in open moving containers to facilitate safe and fast point-to-point movements. The liquid behavior is modeled using finite element analysis. The input shaper parameters are optimized to find the commands that would result in minimum residual vibration. Other objectives, such as improved robustness and motion constraints such as deflection limiting are also included in the optimization scheme. Numerical results are verified on an experimental setup consisting of a small motor-driven water tank that is precisely guided to undergo rectilinear motion, while measuring both the tank motion and free surface displacement of the water. The results obtained suggest that input shaping is an effective method for suppressing residual liquid vibrations.


Mechanical Engineering Department

Degree Name

MS in Mechanical Engineering

Date of Award


Online Submission Date

February 2013

First Advisor

Arafa, Mustafa

Committee Member 1

Arafa, Mustafa

Committee Member 2

Nassef, Ashraf

Document Type



91 p.


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