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Acoustic developments in timber construction

: Bartlomé, Olin; Furrer, Bernhard; Liebl, Andreas; Späh, Moritz; Kittel, Maria

21st International Congress on Sound and Vibration, ICSV 2014 : Beijing, China 13-17 July 2014
Red Hook, NY: Curran, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-63439-238-9
pp.2623-2630 (Vol.3)
International Congress on Sound and Vibration (ICSV) <21, 2014, Beijing>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IBP ()

In Switzerland multi-storey timber construction has been very successful in recent years. This is primarily due to the 2005 amended fire safety regulations. This development brought with it new challenges with regard to sound mitigation. Prior, when timber was primarily used for single-family homes, sound insulation inside homes bore low relevance. Multi-storey timber buildings provide space for various parties living above and below each other. Sound insula-tion requirements are governed by national standards. Apart from this, there are requirements driven by occupants. These are based on subjective human perception and can lead to com-plaints about low-frequency sound even if the values specified in the standard are met. Re-search was therefore carried out on the subjective assessment with in-situ measurements, a broad survey and auditory tests. Additionally common details and their robustness where evaluated and within 4 case studies examined. The results of the research project in short are:
- The frequency range for sound insulation needs to be considered from 50 Hz
- Building elements are showing a wide range of construction principles and acoustic prop-erties. A structured online catalogue with robust details was developed
- A calculation method was developed to use available data from 100 Hz to get the re-quired data down to 50 Hz
- With good floor build-ups, the flanking transmission is of minor importance
- One main reasons for the small sound insulation properties of timber constructions in the low frequency range is the low mass
- The surface of the floor is important for the acoustic compliance: A resilient layer changes the shape of the force pulse and the mechanical power introduced into the structure.
- The quality of elements/buildings must be guaranteed. Timber constructions can be con-trolled significantly in industrialised building systems