Abstract : Today's research in nuclear physics and in particle physics needs high energy or high intensity accelerators ; the use of superconducting cavities constitutes a very important technological advance for the design of such facilities, allowing high accelerating gradient with few dissipation. One of the major problems is the frequency shift under Lorentz forces: since the quality factor of the superconducting cavities is much higher than the external factor depending on the beam charge, their bandwidths are very narrow (several Hertz). Even very small mechanical deformations under Lorentz forces could induce a frequency shift which exceeds the bandwidth when the accelerating gradient becomes very high. The contribution of this thesis consists at first in a numerical analysis of this problem, then in a mechanical study of a new method for stiffening superconducting cavities: a copper coating over their external surface by thermal spray techniques. As it was a new experiment, the choice of the process and the optimization of the parameters have been carried out. An important part of this thesis has been dedicated to the systematic mechanical characterizations of the copper coatings since they are indispensable for the evaluation of the stiffening efficiency, some links between copper coating properties and thermal projection parameters have been established. The mechanical calculations are a prerequisite to obtain an effective reduction of mechanical deformations under Lorentz forces: they permit to localize the maximum deformations, to find the ideal position and the optimized shape of the stiffener. The methods implemented in this thesis allow to compare the different kinds of coating design and then to propose an interesting solution. Finally, an original approach concerning the frequency shift in pulsed mode has been developed recently, allowing to interpret some experimental observations.