Important Aspects On Industrial Noise Control

By Eugenia Dickerson

Excessive noise in the work place is a common problem that is not just a bother but a health hazard as well. Noisy equipment in the workplace includes vacuum pumps, blowers, compressors, stamping presses and air handling equipment. There are a number of options of industrial noise control that are currently available for use. The choice of method is dependent on the amount of masking that is desired. It is common for two or three of these methods to be used in combination.

One of the measures that can be put in place is the use of sound curtains. Specially designed curtains or sound blankets can be fitted in areas that are identified as being excessively noisy. Heavy machinery, compressors and pumps can be wrapped in the blankets of appropriate sizes. The main advantage of blankets is that they are effective and easy to work with. They also make access of noisy environments easy for the workers.

Sound enclosure is said to be very effective as well. This method uses a number of steel panels that are fitted into the affected room. The panels are fitted in a manner that allows access of the affected environment by the workers. They are fitted with ventilation to allow for free flow of air. The floor of the room is usually left to be used for other purposes. Users may request for customised designs depending on their specifications.

Sound barrier walls can be fitted both indoors and outdoors. They are recommended for structures in which using a roofed sound proof system would be impractical or impossible. Materials used are mainly made of steel and include both panels and sheets. Another option that is available is possible for structures that will not allow the use of enclosures is a baffle. Baffles are usually mounted to a ceiling of the affected room and greatly enhance absorption. They are typically used alongside other equipment.

Different designs of silencers are currently available. These are also termed attenuators or mufflers. They are used to control noisy environments related to airflow. Mufflers are mounted into the ductwork or onto the equipment. Composite foam is used in more or less the same way. The foam is fitted inside the cabinets of machines. Both silencers and mufflers are very easy to use.

There are many other options that can be used some of which require some improvisation. Duct lagging is a simple yet quite effective measure. In this method a noisy pipe or duct is wrapped using composite material. This material controls sound transmission through the walls of the pipe or duct.

Other than modifying the building and the equipment, one may also opt for creation of a quiet room. The quiet room or test enclosure eliminates the distraction in the immediate environment even when no other measures have been put in place. It is a very important component of quality departments in various industries.

When noise pollution is not well controlled, it makes the working environment uncomfortable and poses a health hazard to the people who work in the environment. Proper personal equipment and environmental modification are needed. Affected persons need to undergo regular check-ups to ensure that they have not suffered hearing defects. The measures aimed at industrial noise control need to be assessed regularly to ascertain that they are indeed working.

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