Building Acoustics

Building Acoustics

The application of acoustical science and engineering to the building design process results in spaces that are more pleasing and comfortable to occupants, more separate when privacy is important, and more functional when spaces are intended to facilitate communication or entertainment. AIA provides building acoustics services for all stages of a building project from the schematic drawing phase through construction.

  • Exterior to Interior Sound Transmission Control – The building envelope is what separates interior spaces from exterior noise sources such as a busy highway or a nearby factory. Selecting a building’s partitions, windows and doors for the environment and intended use of the space is essential to achieving the correct interior acoustical environment.
  • Room Separation and Privacy – Excessive room-to-room sound transmission can result in difficulty concentrating, difficulty communicating, and a loss of privacy. AIA can review building designs for appropriate room adjacencies, provide advice on selecting inter-room partition and floor-ceiling designs, and identify mechanical or other features that may result in a degradation of room separation.
  • Room Acoustics – For performance spaces, such as auditoria, or spaces designed for communication, such as classrooms, the behavior of sound inside the room is critical. AIA can recommend effective wall and ceiling shapes and surfaces to control the reflection and propagation of sound in a way that is complementary, rather than adverse, to the room’s intended purpose.
  • Mechanical Equipment Noise and Vibration – Buildings are necessarily served by mechanical equipment. The equipment may be physically separated from occupied spaces, but ducts, pipes, and building structure provide pathways for unwanted sound and vibration to travel to building occupants. AIA provides advice on HVAC systems, plumbing system, elevators, and other mechanical installations to minimize the impact of a building’s equipment on its occupants.