By: Sidney Mcelhinney  05/12/2011
Keywords: Wall, Sound Absorption


The field of acoustics covers the generation, control, transmission and effect of sound. The acoustics of interior rooms is concerned with improving the audibility of speech and the fidelity of music & sound rendition.

At Sidney McElhinney ltd we offer a range of acoustic options from acoustic partitions, and wall linings to acoustic ceilings.

Irrespective of the size of a room or space and the use it is put to, acoustics have a major bearing on whether we perceive the atmosphere to be enjoyable or not. A sound in a room is still audible a short time after the source has ceased. This is due to the fact that the decaying sound is reflected off the surfaces in the room thus creating a kind of echo. The length of time that this echo effect lasts for will depend on the size and the shape of the room or space and the amount of sound absorbing surfaces in the space.

This “echo” effect is measured in Reverberation Time. In most premises comfortable room acoustics depend on a short reverberation time. Rooms intended for conversation or where a high degree of privacy is required are most dependent on short reverberation times. The smooth-surfaced walling which is frequently encountered in modern architecture and the preference for sound reflecting surfaces such as concrete, glass, ceramic tiling, marble or metal contribute to spaces offering only low levels of sound absorption and therefore poor acoustic performance.

As well as optimising Reverberation Times, sound insulation should also be a major consideration when designing or improving spaces. Sound insulation relates to the overall ability of a building structure to prevent sound from passing between rooms or spaces. The two main ways sound is transmitted are airborne sound transmission (where airborne sound passes through walls, ceilings or air gaps in the structure) and impact sound transmission (such as where sound is transmitted by a person walking on a floor overhead). Another “nuisance factor” for room acoustics is Noise. Noise is where external sounds such as cars & trains or background sounds such as air conditioning, computer servers, etc. create a negative ambiance or working environment. Other noise can come from people in the room coughing, talking or scraping chairs of the floors.

Scientific studies have shown that pleasant working environments lead to increased productivity. Atriums, large open spaces, music rooms and auditoriums require special treatment. Confidentiality is essential in meeting rooms, medical consulting rooms, solicitors offices and the like. It is important that serious consideration is given to acoustics when starting from new or upgrading an existing building.

At Sidney McElhinney Ltd. we can offer you solutions to all of your acoustical requirements. Whether it be simple solutions such as installing a sound absorbing suspended ceiling (which is often the easiest and most cost effective way of achieving a pleasant acoustic environment) and installation of sound insulating metal stud or glazed partitions and moveable walls to more complicated solutions such as seamless acoustic ceilings, sound absorbing wall panels, floating acoustic ceiling panels or sound proofing timber floors, we can do it all. Working with our partners such as Armstrong, Echophon, Owa, Sto and others we can provide you with design solutions, calculations and advice to enable you to achieve your desired results at the most competitive cost.

Keywords: Sound Absorption, Wall,

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