The implementation of dividers with high performance in terms of acoustics, making it possible to create partitioned spaces (possibly: with different ambiances e.g. different sound environments) is often required in the context of layout projects, when one or more several of the following concepts make sense [1] :

  • discretion: this is the situation obtained when an effort is required to understand the content of an emitted conversation [1]. In these conditions, the conversation is not a source of distraction.
  • confidentiality: this is the situation obtained when, even with an effort to understand an emitted conversation [1], it remains incomprehensible.

Noise protections for improving the acoustic comfort of work premises and public acces buildings (PAB) are therefore appropriate in many contexts :

  • when this is the case in companies :
    • this can concern (sometimes very) large premises (e.g. spaces to be fitted out, collective or open-plan offices, open spaces). It is often a question of obtaining workspaces for various activities such as those which require the use of the telephone, those which have to do with an administrative work, those which one carries out within an engineering team; so that everyone is not bothered by the (professional) activity of others, in particular in relation to the noise of conversations (but also sometimes: in connection with telephone ringtones - not only in call centers and commercial departments -, sound emissions from printers, plotters and various more or less specific devices)
    • (generally concerning smaller rooms) it is sometimes a question of obtaining relaxation areas (then: with a calm atmosphere conducive to rest, allowing conversations between several persons without causing discomfort for neighboring premises )
  • when this is the case in premises hosting public equipped with counters :
    • this can concern many establishments in the field of health, credit (including: in some department stores), and administrative sites (e.g. public finance centers)
  • when this is the case in restaurants :
    • this may concern premises of very variable size (e.g. company or community restaurant, canteen - to name those that we frequent mainly because it is necessary - but also more or less grand brasseries and dining rooms of all kinds - it is of course preferable that the qualifier "grand" is not linked to the number of seats but to the quality of the menus and the service -); to provide a calm atmosphere allowing occupants to enjoy the moment without being bothered by neighboring or (what is worse ?) distant tables and without having to shout to be heard e.g. for conversations with people at the same table, for discussions with the staff

To be efficient, anti-noise protections for improving the acoustic comfort of work premises and public access buildings (PAB) must have different characteristics :

  • intrinsic acoustic performance, particularly at mid-high frequencies i.e. in the 1/1 octave frequency bands centered on 500, 1000 and 2000 Hz (generally corresponding to the human voice) :
    • in terms of sound reduction index (a mass density of 5 kg/m2 generally allows, for high frequencies, sufficient limitation of sound transmission through the panel, especially when it is reinforced by the presence of a compressed mineral wool); without a sufficient sound reduction index (expressed in decibels, the symbol of which is dB) (of the order of 20 dB) there is no good anti-noise protection (because the noise "passes through" the soundproofing panel of which installation is planned)
    • in terms of sound absorption coefficient (should be as close as possible to 100%); not only the quality of the lining then comes into play with respect to this aspect of acoustic quality, but also the surfacing which must be sufficiently permeable to air (without which the sound cannot propagate beyond the surface layer of the sound protection); without a sufficient absorption coefficient (this is a percentage) sufficient (of the order of 90%) there is no good anti-noise protection (because the sounds are reflected on the panel whose use is envisaged , which is highly undesirable); noise protection is all the more involved in reducing the reverberation time of a room (which is not always minor) as their sound absorption coefficient is high
  • dimensions and layout appropriate to the location and extent of the areas to be protected :
    • with regard to the different possible paths for the acoustic waves (in general three: two by lateral bypassing - unless the noise protection is perpendicular to a wall or adjacent to other aligned noise protection - and one by diffraction on the upper edge of the screen - unless it is a seamless separation between floor and ceiling -); a screen should not be too small, and the efficiency decreases as the point of emission and/or reception (of sound waves) is far away from the acoustic screen

In addition, the on-site performance of noise protection is optimal in the case of premises where the effect of sound reverberation (i.e. temporal persistence) is not too important, which implies the presence of sound-absorbing materials :

  • of sufficient quality (i.e. with a sound absorption coefficient as close as possible to 100%)
  • with an appropriate quantity and arrangement (the total area to be covered: walls, ceiling or even floor - then with lower acoustic performance - varies according to the volume of the considered space)

ITS commercialized anti-noise protections to improve the acoustic comfort of an administrative center located near Orléans (in France: Centre Val de Loire region).

These were screens with high sound absorption (see brochure here) which are anti-noise protections often implemented to improve the acoustic comfort of work premises and public accees buildings (PAB), with intrinsic acoustic characteristics meeting the highest standards in terms of functionality related to soundproofing (see above); mobile, they will make possible changes in the layout, and there is no doubt that their contribution to the decorative aspects of the project will be appreciated by all occupants of the considered space.

Acoustic comfort in buildings end faq

[1] with respect to a neighboring workstation (in a firm), a neighboring table (in a restaurant), a neighboring counter (e.g. in the reception hall of an administration, of a medical establishment)

[2] this was not the case for this project: ITS can (within the framework of an acoustic engineering service carried out by its human resource which is very experimented in this field) intervene on site to quantify the quality acoustics (by measurements involving a noise generator and a microphone) of an environment and offer a diversified range of anti-noise protections and other soundproofing devices in all contexts