Tire modal testing is frequently used for validation of numerical tire models and identification of structural tire model parameters. Most studies focus primarily on in-plane dynamic tire behavior and adopt the approach of the fixed boundary condition at the wheel center. Here, an identification method of in-plane tire dynamics was developed for the case of a free tire-rim combination. This particular case is important when the aim is to construct a full tire model, capable of predicting ride and noise, vibration, and harshness involving the whole vehicle, all from modal testing. Key attributes of the proposed approach include ease of implementation and efficient processing of measurements. For each type of excitation, i.e., radial and tangential, both radial and tangential responses were recorded. Compounding of the corresponding radial/tangential eigenvectors, which, in the context of the present work, refers to expressing the motion of the tire belt as a combination of the radial and tangential responses, results in smooth mode shapes that were found to agree with those published in other analytical and experimental studies.

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