Civil Engineering

Experience in assistance on-site, and technical studies

Acoustic measurements and studies

The EUROCONTROL acoustics laboratory offers its customers the following types of tests:

Airborne sound insulation of premises: This type of tests consists basically in determining the insulation between 2 adjoining premises, by performing a series of on-site measurements. A diffuse sound field is generated in one of them, and samples are taken both of the sound pressure level generated in the premises, and of the sound received in the adjoining premises. This allows us to determine the insulation provided by any kind of partition (whether it be a party wall, floor, door, etc.) These tests are always conducted in line with the general guidelines specified by standard UNE EN ISO 140-4:1999.

Airborne sound insulation of facades: This tests is used to determine the sound insulation provided by an element separating a premises and the outside (facades, roofs, gates…). Simlarly to the premises test, a sound field is generated on the outside (which directly impacts the samepl to be tested) and both the sound pressure generated and the sound received inside the premises are measured. This allows us to determine the insulation provided by the partition. These tests are always conducted in line with the general guidelines specified by standard UNE EN ISO 140-5:1999.

Impact sound insulation: This type of tests is used to determine the extent to which a premises is insulated against structural (or impact) noise as compared to airborne noise insulation. The same premises can provide excellent insulation against airborne noise (music, voices, etc.), yet very poor or no insulation against structural noise (footsteps, furniture being dragged, falling objects …). The test consists in generating impacts with a standardized machine on a wall and determining the amount of noise generated in another due to the impacts generated. These tests are always conducted in line with the general guidelines specified by standard UNE EN ISO 140-7:1999.

Measurement and certification of noise and vibration levels: This consists in measuring the levels of noise and / or vibration caused by any source (activity, installation, behaviour, etc.) that can be disturbing or annoying both inside premises, and in the external environment. The results of these measurements are compared with the limit values laid down applicable regulations (a municipal bylaw, a Regional Decree or a curtent National Royal Decree) and a certificate is issued to certify regulatory conformity or nonconformity.

Measurement of the reverberation time of rooms: this is one of the most important parameters when checking the acoustic comfort of a room and is defined as the time that a sound takes to disappear from when it is generated until it fades into the ambient (background) noise in a closed room. This parameter is always measured in line with the general guidelines specified by standard UNE EN ISO 3382-2008:1999.

Determination of sound power levels of noise sources: This is a necessary requirement for CE marking of machinery and can be determined by measuring the sound pressure levels emitted by the source by following certain conditions, which are specified in standard UNE EN ISO 3744:2010.

Our engineering-consultancy acoustic department offers the following types of studies.

Noise maps: A noise map is a graphic display of the sound pressure levels in a given place, at different period of time (generally daytime, afternoon/evening and nighttime). These maps are drawn up to ascertain how many people are exposed to levels of noise potentially damaging to health, and then used to drawn up an action plan to reduce these noise levels. EUROCONTROL conducts these studies using CADNAA simulation software, one of the most widely used and best accepted programmes for this kind of work, and for which it has several licenses.

Predictive sound insulation studies: Specialized software can be used to ascertain the level of sound insulation that different construction solutions will provide, without having to carry them out physically. This is useful when it comes to implementing CTE DB-HR (Technical Building Code – Basic Document on Noise protection)(which requires a theoretical justification of the insulation that will be installed in the building, in addition to the final test checks). It is also useful when obtaining a license for any potentially noisy activity, because most municipal bylaws requires that any licence application include sound insulation plans that theoretically justify the isolation levels of the premises where the activity will be carried out, to avoid causing any causing discomfort or inconvenience outside it or in adjoining premises.

Acoustic treatment studies: whenever prime venues (auditoriums, theatres, conference halls, etc.) are concerned, acoustics are one of the most important parameters to be addressed in this type of project. Using acoustic simulation software, EUROCONTROL’s engineers can a room’s acoustic suitability, using parameters such as the room’s reverberation time, speech intelligibility, acoustic clarity and strength, the ALCONS or RASTI index, etc … and propose solutions if the parameters are not as expected.