Acoustics and Acoustic
Testing from Druk Limited
Druk limited has many years experience in assessing acoustic implications in both the environmental and architectural fields in addition to providing practical and effective solutions where necessary. Whether this is assessing the potential effect of a new commercial development on the existing noise climate of an area or investigating the feasibility of a environment for residential development, we can provide you with the necessary assistance.
In the majority of instances this takes the form of assessing the sound insulation of building elements.
What is sound insulation?
Sound insulation may be thought of as the ability of a building or an element to resist the transmission of sound to adjacent rooms or spaces.
How is sound transmitted through a building?
The study of how sound travels through buildings can be very complex indeed, however it is possible to think of sound travelling either directly or indirectly through a building. Direct sound transmission does just that, it passes between two adjacent spaces via the wall or floor that separates them. Indirect transmission, often called flanking transmission, of sound then occurs via any route other than the direct route. It is however worth remembering that sound transmission can be very complex and that this is a very simple description of the principal distinctions.
In most everyday situations the transmission of sound is made up of both direct and indirect components, and the contributions of these two components can and often does vary greatly.
Why is it important?
Typically, most people think of sound insulation in terms of their own homes. Most commonly, should you live in a terraced house, a semi-detached house or a flat you may at certain times be able to hear noise from your neighbours. Quite simply, the better is the sound insulation of the wall and/or floor that separates you from your neighbours, the less you will be able to hear from them, providing your neighbours don't turn up the volume!
What are the Building Regulations for Sound Insulation?
In an attempt to ensure that a reasonable level of sound insulation will exist between different types of residential dwelling, the Building Regulations Approved Document E (ADE) "Resistance to the Passage of Sound" sets minimum standards for sound insulation. In this document sound insulation is referred to as airborne sound insulation, including components like voices and noise from televisions and stereos, or impact sound insulation of floors which is commonly though of as the sound of people walking across the floor. It should however be remembered that these are typical examples of airborne and impact noise, it is not an exhaustive list!
The minimum values of sound insulation relate to many types of dwellings: houses (terraced and semi-detached), flats, hotel rooms etc. Depending on whether the dwellings are new build or conversions, different minimum values of sound insulation exist.
First and foremost, sound insulation testing is usually required by Building Control Bodies to demonstrate that a separating wall or floor have complied with the minimum standards specified in ADE. It is not necessary to test everything; a minimum number of tests are detailed in ADE, although Building Control Bodies can require more or less testing to be carried out.
Despite this it is not always necessary to test the sound insulation of a building; again these exceptions are detailed within ADE.
When should sound insulation testing be carried out?
In order to get the best possible results it is best to test when the building is structurally complete and to all intents and purposes finished. Ideally, testing should be undertaken before buildings are occupied, and furnished; although it is not impossible to test when a building is occupied, it just means that the occupants will have to tolerate a degree of disturbance.
Why choose Druk?
We have many years of sound testing experience and endeavour to provide a professional cost effective service that meets our customer's needs. In addition Approved Document E requires that:
"Test bodies conducting testing should preferably have UKAS accreditation
(or a European equivalent) for field measurements. The ODPM also regards
members of the ANC (Association of Noise Consultants) Registration
Scheme as suitably qualified to carry out pre-completion testing".
With this requirement in mind, Druk Limited is a UKAS accredited testing laboratory (No. 4507) for the purpose of pre-completion sound insulation testing.