Noise Pollution and Fighting it With Acoustic Foam

By: Stephen Morgan

Noise pollution (or environmental noise in technical areas and venues) is termed as displeasing or annoying human or mechanically caused sound that is or can be described as alien to the environment.

I guess to most of us the major source of this pollution would come from transportation systems, as anyone who has tried to hire a car from the main AVIS car rental depot at Heathrow Airport would testify to. Based on the perimeter road at Heathrow sometimes the noise of landing 747's can make it a little difficult explaining to the attendant what problems you may have had (or not) with the car you are returning.

However before we all start to assume that noise pollution is purely something that occurs in major cities let us consider the effect of noise pollution in rural communities. Now noise from recreational vehicles has become quite a major issue with the rural communities. Quad Bikes or All Terrain Vehicles (ATV's) have become a serious problem in the countryside. They have increased massively in popularity and are joining the more traditional two wheeled bikes as the vehicle of choice for off road riding.

The bottom line is that we live in a noisy world and by that I mean not just the sound of cars and traffic etc but the way we live our lives and perhaps more importantly where we are now living and the density of the accommodation we provide ourselves.

In the old days when basically all you had to worry about was the old cottage in the middle of the field 6 miles away from the nearest neighbour you could make as much noise as you wanted and it wasn't a problem. Nowadays basically we have people living on top of each other, underneath each other and in fact all over the place and more importantly interfacing with modern day technologies in ways that hitherto would have thought to have been impossible. As such the use of the acoustic foam and the noise dampening systems are essential.

If we take for example the situation in many cities nowadays when we have whole plethoras of modern communication links such as underground railway systems, over ground railway systems, modern two-way flyovers and in fact transports communications and residential accommodation right next to each other. Without adequate noise reduction systems in place and incorporated within the structure of the residential and work accommodation than pretty quickly life within these new cities would become pretty intolerable.

As we have said before, enter stage left acoustic foam. Without these new technologies providing the noise insulation, the quality of life in most built up areas would be appalling.

At this point it becomes pretty obvious to all concerned quite what a debt we owe to noise reduction systems and soundproofing in general that quite often mere words on no longer enough.

Having lived in the centre of London and also spent time on the northwest coast of County Donegal in Ireland, when it comes to noise pollution I know which one I prefer.

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