Abstract : We present a theoretical study of the resonances of a fluid-structure problem, an elastic plate placed in a duct in the presence of a compressible fluid. The case of a rigid plate has been largely studied. Acoustic resonances are then associated to resonant modes trapped by the plate. Due to the elasticity of the plate, we need to solve a quadratic eigenvalue problem in which the resonance frequencies k solve the equations γ(k) = k2, where γ are the eigenvalues of a self-adjoint operator of the form A + kB. First, we show how to study the eigenvalues located below the essential spectrum by using the min-max principle. Then, we study the fixed-point equations. We establish sufficient conditions on the characteristics of the plate and of the fluid to ensure the existence of resonances. Such conditions are validated numerically. © The author 2007. Published by Oxford University Press; all rights reserved.