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The efficiency of an automobile increases as its running torque increases. This is an avenue for improving fuel economy that is actively being pursued. However, transmissions running at higher torques produce an unacceptable amount of noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH). NVH occurs most visibly as a result of the vehicle’s friction clutch behavior. At present, machines capable of testing this behavior exist (MTM machine and LVFA rig) but are very expensive in terms of time, space, and production cost.

The goal of this project is to produce a cost-effective machine in which friction clutch behavior can be analyzed in a laboratory setting. Due to the complex nature of this project, multiple teams will be working to refine and improve the instrument over time. The first iteration of the machine produced by a previous design team was very limited in its ability to produce data efficiently. This design team took on the challenge of automating data collection for the load cell and thermocouple installed by the previous team, as well as implementing automated instrumentation capable of measuring motor torque and speed.

The new instrumentation of the machine is illustrated below, with the measurements of torque, load, speed, and temperature being collected by an analog data acquisition system. The machine is now capable of simultaneously recording these values, producing results such as the graph shown below. In addition to the sensor additions, the team made structural modifications to the machine to accommodate the torque sensor assembly.

Publication Date



Transmission, Clutch, Efficiency, Noise


Engineering | Mechanical Engineering | Nuclear Engineering

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Hooman V. Tafreshi

VCU Capstone Design Expo Posters


© The Author(s)

Date of Submission

May 2018

Reducing Noise in Automatic Transmission