Walk-behind vibratory-plate compactors are pieces of light equipment designed for construction in order to compact loose materials such as granular soils, gravel, small aggregate, and hot asphalt mixes. Most models uses an engine-driven exciter mechanism that causes the machine’s base plate to rapidly vibrate, thus moving soil particles and asphalt aggregates closer together to effect consolidation on the construction site.
Common applications include trenches, parking lots and driveways; and on large, flat work areas such as repairing streets, backfilling trenches, or preparing sites for asphalt or concrete. The vibrations created by a plate compactor move the particles of soil together. They can also compact soils with some clay content or asphalt. Compacting these materials adds to the stability of the project, whether it be a road or other structure placed over the compacted area.
Vibration “frequency” might reach 4,000 vibrations per minute, while the plate’s amplitude might be just a fraction of inch.