This paper studies the forced vibration of a rotating blade with free damping layers to harmonic excitation by means of the finite element method. The damping layers are made of viscoelastic material with complex elastic modulus, and the excitation may be either distributed or concentrated. Triangular elements with totally 15 d.o.f. are used to allow for a great variety of shapes and boundary conditions. The effects of various parameters, such as loss factor, storage modulus and thickness of damping layers, are investigated. The results show that the vibration amplitudes near resonances can be significantly reduced by the free damping layers.

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