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What are airsprings (air suspension)

What are airsprings (air suspension)

What are airsprings (air suspension)

I have just been invited to an interview this Friday 16th for a graduate position with a company who manufacture small air springs - donut rubber rings, seat air springs, and shock absorber sleeves.

I have to give a 5 min presentation on "Air Springs:What are they and what are the design challenges?"

I currently have no knowledge of this topic and would appreciate any advice, knowledge, web links etc. which may help.

RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)


Type in air spring. I got 17,000,000 hits.

For more hits repeat using air suspension.

To get really fancy try road friendly suspension.

If you look at the google results you will also see other suggested searches industrial air springs.

http://en.wikipedia.org also had some useful info that was very easy to find. You should try that as well.

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RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)

Even in the best of circumstances, they have a finite life.
Design tools, e.g. at Bellofram, predict life pretty accurately.

They are used on heavy trucks as auxiliary springs and sometimes as primary springs.  They work in that application because they're fat relative to the required stroke.

They have been tried on mass produced automobiles at least three times to my knowledge.  You can recognize cars so equipped because they all end up riding around on the bump stops.


Mike Halloran
Pembroke Pines, FL, USA

RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)

Not counting Citroen which was somewhat different, at least MB, Lexus and Subaru did it in late 80s early 90s. As far as I know they all dropped the idea.

Air assist shocks and supplementary springs to accommodate greatly varying loads have been more successful.

Air springs also find industrial application as actuators.

Is a tyre an air spring of sorts. Same for inflated balls.

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RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)

Thank you for your responses.

Them, along with using Google has helped me understand more what air springs are and where/why they are used.

I'm still having difficulty finding out what the design challenges would be for a design engineer.

Has anyone any thoughts on this?  

RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)

I would say material selection would be quite a design challenge. You'd be looking for an elastomeric material which is resistant to all weather influences, temperature extremes, while also being oil resistant on the outside and airtight on the inside.

Any other suggestions?

RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)

packaging can be a pain in the a&&...

Cabbages, knickers, It hasn't got A BEAK!

RE: What are airsprings (air suspension)

Puncture resistance and design to prevent contact wityh sharp objects.

They may get quite hot in use.

If will wear and generate heat if it folds enough to rub on itself.

I think several points of designing tyres for durability might apply to air springs.

Bonding of reinforcing fibres to the matrix might be an issue.

Retention of metal fittings in the rubber might be an issue.

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