The paper considers three issues in flexible rotor and magnetic bearing systems, namely control of rotor vibration, control of transmitted forces, and prevention of rotor contact with auxiliary bearings. An adaptive multi-objective optimization method is developed to tackle these issues simultaneously using a modified recursive open loop adaptive controller. The proposed method involves automatic tuning of the weighting parameters in accordance with performance specifications. A two-stage weighting strategy is implemented involving base weightings, calculated from a singular value decomposition of the system’s receptance matrices, and two adjustable weighting parameters to shift the balance between the three objective functions. The receptance matrices are functions of rotational speed and they are estimated in situ. The whole process does not require prior knowledge of the system parameters. Real-time implementation of the proposed controller is explained and tested by using an experimental flexible rotor magnetic bearing system. The rotor displacements were measured relative to the base frame using four pairs of eddy current displacement transducers. System stability is ensured through local PID controllers. The proposed adaptive controller is implemented in parallel and the effectiveness of the weighting parameters in changing the balance between the transmitted forces and rotor vibrations is demonstrated experimentally.

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