*Overview*

*Overview*

HAM-SAS "simply" stands for Horizontal Access Module Seismic
Attenuation System.
In other words, the HAM-SAS is a system expressely designed to fit in
the tight space of the LIGO
HAM vacuum chamber.

It should provide an attenuation factor of about 70dB above 10Hz
for the auxiliary optics carried by the triple pendulum suspension.

*Seismic Attenuation Strategy*

*Seismic Attenuation Strategy*

This Seismic attenuation system is based on the property of the mechanical oscillator which attenuates, as a second order low pass filter, above its resonant frequency; therefore the attenuation is purely passive like a passive RLC resonant circuit. No active control is applied to reduce the seismic noise in the frequency band of interest.

Mechanical resonators have the unpleasant property (for us) of having very high quality factors, which amplify the residual RMS displacement noise. It is necessary to reduce such RMS noise otherwise it becomes impossible to properly control the payload position. To fix such a problem, seismic attenuators designer always (almost) relies on some of kind active damping: inertial damping to improve the overall performance, or relative to ground if the resonances are low enough to not compromise the attenuation performance.

A smarter solution is possible when tunable mechanical oscillators are
used.

Tunable mechanical oscillators can become unstable or better,
very close to stability. Under this condition, a very weak force is
necessary to keep the oscillator steady (stable), and
no oscillator resonances will practicaly show up; therefore, there is
no need to damp the harmonic resonances, and just a DC active control
with a quite easy control law is needed.

The side benefit of such strategy, which is not marginal at all, is
that the passive
attenuation is maximized thanks to the lowest as practical as possible
filter cut off frequency.

Internal modes of the mechanical structures spoil the passive
attenuation.
In other words, they generate peaks and saturation in the
transmissibility ,(the ratio of seismic excitation over the response of
the attenuation system),
compromising the performance of the system.

It is therefore necessary to make such structures as stiffer as
possible to relegate internal resonances and transmissibility
saturation at frequencies, where the seismic noise spectra is very
small.