To shield employees, it is important to absorb sound that may become not only a productivity issue, but also a health issue (headaches, tinnitus, high blood pressure, anxiety, etc.). More than 30 million workers experience dangerous high levels of noise in the workplace; hearing loss is one of the top reported work injuries in the United States.
When considering sound baffle and/or acoustic banners, any sound reflecting surfaces are a good place to start. Please note lighting and fire suppression system outlet locations within your facility when considering your industrial acoustics project. Your local fire authority is the best source of guidelines for ceiling-mounted baffles / acoustic banners when a fire suppression system exists. Depending on your ceiling type, you can employ horizontal, vertical, or a soft wave type sound energy panel system. Both ceiling and wall-mounted acoustic baffle panels are exceptionally effective with mid to high frequency noise containment situations and are best handled with some combination of partition sound blockage and panel or cloud type sound absorbency.
When people need to stay in an area with a high noise level, reasonable efforts and expense can render significant noise level reduction. Since effective sound-absorbing materials are typically soft and not highly abrasion-resistant, the placement of acoustic baffle systems is vital to its effectiveness for echo reduction.
Reverberations can be described as a prolongation of sounds within an area that is caused by sound “bouncing” that occurs on a continual basis. In easier terms: reverberation (also known as reverb) is the “echo” you hear in a room. Drywall, glass, tile, architectural peaks, domes, and/or other concave surfaces allow the sound to reflect long after the initial sound energy is generated, creating the “echo” sound.
The “reflections” of sound cause audibility issues, especially when an industry continuously generates high decibel, low frequency noises. A low frequency sound wave is the most difficult wavelength to absorb because it is much longer than a high frequency sound wave. So when it has an increase in intensity level (measured by decibels), it creates a discomfort in people within the area, whether they are workers and/or employees in a warehouse facility or an audience for a concert or sports event.
When it comes to creating an area that has tolerable noise control, AmCraft provides sound baffles and wall panels that will help absorb the reflections and acoustic wave “bouncing” for a generally comfortable environment. It is important to remember that proper echo reduction can also help your facility meet OSHA standards of acceptable noise levels.
It is important to have a basic understanding of Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) when considering acoustic baffle systems for your work environment. The NRC standard is a numerical index that indicates the absorption qualities of material, based off of four general sound frequencies (250, 500, 1000, and 2000 Hertz). An NRC value will indicate the level of sound that is absorbed.
A material that has an NRC of .90 means that the material absorbs 90% of the sound, while it reflects 10% of the sound back into the space. AmCraft acoustic baffles have an acoustic chamber on the inside of the curtain wall that can be customized to your echo reduction (also known as reverberation reduction) and/or noise dampening needs. The acoustic chamber has a core that can include insulation rated for sound absorption, a flexible sound membrane rated for more dramatic sound reduction purposes, or both materials combined.
With a combination of AmCraft’s sound-absorbing wall panels, acoustic baffles, and acoustical banners, the echoing and sound reflection can be reduced to a more comfortable level. Higher frequency sounds (i.e. woodworking machinery, stone cutters, ambulance sirens, etc.) are much easier to absorb than low frequency sounds (i.e. generators, printing presses, metal punch press operations, pneumatic jackhammer, etc.). Low frequency sounds are generally more common warehouse and/or industrial acoustics and are in between the range of 100 Hz – 150 Hz, whereas high frequency sounds have a higher “pitch” to them. Low frequency waves are much longer than high frequency waves, making low frequency waves more audible at greater distances and greater difficulty to reduce echo and noise. This creates a “vibration” effect that tampers with structural integrity of a building as well as the physical safety and comfort of personnel.
AmCraft manufactures the ideal acoustical banners, sound-absorbing wall panels, and acoustic baffles that will help to reduce reverberations and sound reflection. For low frequency sounds, it is important to have more soundwave-absorbing “obstructions” in order to break down and interrupt the wavelengths. This can be achieved by having a mix of the sound baffles, wall panels, and acoustic banners occur more often with high frequency noise situations.
Our technical sales representatives have the knowledge to assist you with your project requirements. Give us a call today for a quote!