Stack Vibration Dampers | Meca Enterprises Inc


The most common mode of failure in stacks is vibration due to Vortex Shedding, here are some common Engineering solutions to address this vibration in an economical manner.


Meca provides damping pads for stacks. Generally these are an economical solution for stack heights from about 50 ft [15.2 m] to 150 ft [45.72 m].

It’s a very easily solution to implement on New Stack designs. Damping pads have been used for about 40 years, and have proven to be very reliable.


Tuned Mass
Dampers (TMD)

A Tuned Mass Damper (TMD) is device that is added to the top portion of the stack that increases the damping of the stack, which will suppress wind induced vibration.


Tuned Liquid
Dampers (TLD)

Meca has partnerships with companies that design Tuned Mass Dampers (TMD) and Tuned Liquid Dampers (TLD). These are typically used on stacks that are 150 ft [45. m] and taller. There are many factors that determine whether a TMD or TLD is more appropriate.


Vortex Shedding SolutionAdvantagesDisadvantages
Damping Pad
  • Easy to install on NEW stack
  • Low Cost
  • Doesn’t require much change to the stack
  • Can only withstand up to 200° F
  • Adds flexibility to Stack
  • Can’t easily be installed onto EXISTING stacks.
  • Anchor bolts need to be approximately 2.5″ longer projection
Tuned Mass Damper (TMD)
  • Provides the greatest damping
  • Can visually see if the TMD is working
  • All Stainless Steel components
  • Relatively low weight and wind drag
  • Higher cost
  • Needs to be near top of the stack
  • Complicates design if there are attachments (Piping, L&P’s, etc.)
Tuned Liquid Damper (TLD)
  • Shape can be altered to fit available space
  • No moving parts, only the internal liquid sloshes
  • Can be used as a platform
  • Can only be used in certain situations
  • If stack temperature is high, then steps must be taken to prevent liquid from boiling
  • Cannot visually see if the liquid is present from grade
  • Many clients have the perception that they will corrode due to the presences of liquid
Continuous Helical Strakes
  • Design is simple
  • Very common and understood by many
  • Due to increased wind drag, they can increase the wind loads on the stack by 30 to 50%, which can add significant steel to the stack
  • They do not work if there is another tall structure within 15 diameters of the stack
  • They are very difficult to fabricate
Segmented Strakes
  • They are easy and cheap to fabricate
  • They do not always work, don’t use them