In its simplest form, acoustic-structure interaction refers to the process in which the vibrations of structure, membrane, or solid generates acoustic pressure waves in the surrounding medium. In a loudspeaker, for example, the structural displacements of the coil impose a vibration of the membrane, which is transferred to as pressure changes in the air. In some cases, acoustic pressure waves in the medium are used to produce vibrations in a solid, such as in ultrasound imaging or in nondestructive testing.

Modeling acoustic-structure interaction involves the coupling of physics from two different fields: acoustics and structural mechanics. In some cases, both the acoustic pressure waves in the fluid and the vibrations of the solid are strong enough to affect each other significantly; the coupling should then be implemented in both directions.

Acoustic-Structure Interaction in a Cylinder Immersed in Water

Liquid or gas acoustic waves coupled to structural objects such as membranes, plates, or solids are important in many engineering fields. This example shows the two-way acoustic-structure coupling between a solid and a liquid.