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Noise protection - multifunctional and aesthetical
Date:1/14/2013

Too much noise causes illness. This is as an undisputed fact nowadays, and yet we're still constantly assailed by noise as we go about our daily lives, be it from traffic or voices in large open-plan offices. Noise pollution can be reduced with the help of structural solutions; we've all seen noise barriers along busy roads and train lines, and there are special acoustic structural components, so-called sound absorbers, which are used inside buildings to keep noise levels down. But there's a problem. The construction components used up until now may well be effective at reducing noise, but they are not often very functional. Architects who incorporate soundproofing measures into their designs often complain about the inflexibility of modern materials. Limiting factors that affect the choice of material include weight, fire resistance or the hygienic requirements involved when designing large-scale kitchens or laboratories. After all there's also an aesthetic aspect; hardly anyone would say that a solid concrete wall along a road was attractive.

Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics IBP are working on new solutions. "One of the main things we are focusing on developing is microperforated construction components. This technology is suitable for all types of material and enables the production of multifunctional, visually appealing sound absorbers that can be used for a flexible range of applications," explains Prof. Dr. Philip Leistner, acting institute director and head of the acoustics department at the IBP. Microperforated absorbers consist of membranes or sheets that have been perforated with a multitude of tiny holes or slits. When sound waves strike the surface as oscillating air molecules, friction is generated between the air in motion and the edge of the miniscule openings. It is this loss of energy that results in the sound being absorbed. The only prerequisite is that there is an air chamber located behind the opening
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Contact: Philip Leistner
philip.leistner@ibp.fraunhofer.de
49-711-970-3346
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

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