Most existing vibration isolators and dampers based on magnetorheological (MR) materials need
electrical power to feed magnetic coils to stimulate the MR material, so if there is a loss of
power, such as during a strong earthquake or system failure, they are unable to protect the
structure. This paper outlines the design and test of a controllable multilayered
magnetorheological elastomer (MRE) isolator based on a circular dipolar Halbach array; which
is a set of magnets that generates a strong and uniform magnetic field. Combining an MRE
layered isolator system with the Halbach array allows for constant vibration isolation with very
low power consumption, where the power generated is only used to adjust the Halbach position.
When this system was tested it successfully altered the lateral stiffness and damping force by
81.13% and 148.72%, respectively. This paper also includes an extended analysis of the
magnetic field generated by the circular dipolar Halbach array and a discussion of the
improvements that may potentially improve the range of magnetic fields generated.