Sound walls, also called noise barriers, are specialized structures meant to prevent noise pollution. With the current population growth and industrialization, major sources of noise are getting closer and closer to offices and residential areas.
Since it may be impossible to eradicate these sources, sound walls have been embraced widely as a measure to mitigate noise pollution. This post provides you with the different types of sound walls and their benefits.
Types of Sound Walls
Sound walls can be classified broadly into absorptive and reflective barriers.
The Absorptive Barriers
They block noise from passing through them. These walls also minimize the rate of reflection of any sound waves landing on them. Absorptive barriers are made of materials such as HDPE, wood, sheet metal, and masonry. The wall is designed in such a way that when sound falls on it, the waves are absorbed and re-channeled within it. Eventually, they will slow down and lose their energy.
These barriers work by redirecting the incoming sound waves to the direction of their origin. They are built majorly on hard concrete or steel.
Sound walls can be further categorized based on their design. For instance, commercial center noise barriers will vary from highway noise barriers. Here are the different types of sound walls based on their applications.
1. Silent Protector Noise Barrier
Silent Protector falls in the category of absorptive sound walls. It is made of perforated vinyl panels and rails integrated with absorbent mineral fiber. Silent protector barriers have a surface density weight of 5.2 pounds per square feet. This feature gives them a sound transmission class of 36, which is within the Ministry’s recommendations.
Some of its advantages include longer lifespan, better aesthetics, ease of installation, and resistance to graffiti.
2. Noise Berms
These are the most common barriers for roads. Noise berms are made with rubble, rocks, and soil. They occupy lots of space because of their gently sloping berms. They may be ineffective since stacking up a high noise berm requires a lot of rubble and land.
3. LSE Absorptive Noise barriers
LSE absorptive sound wall is a strong noise barrier ideal for commercial sites. It is preferred by most businesses because it is sufficiently absorptive, lightweight and easy to build. In addition to that, LSE comes in a modular design with a water/rust resistant material. It is equally very durable and resistant to corrosion.
4. Precast Acoustic Facings
These are multi-purpose sound barrier tiles that have been used for a variety of acoustic problems. They can be attached to almost any wall surface, hence are perfect for retrofit applications. These sound barriers are made of special-grade wood combined with cement. Precast acoustic facings are commonly used in courtyards, shooting ranges, highway cuts, and between residential buildings.
These sound wall systems are readily available and very efficient at what they do. When purchasing a sound wall, consider aspects such as the cost of installation versus its lifespan, as well as the site you want to soundproof.