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Glass

Acoustics

Problem

Unwanted noise is a nuisance but it can be reduced with the right selection of glass.

There are generally three components to be considered when solving a noise problem. These are the external noise, the noise reduction of the building and the resulting noise in the room.

It should be noted that windows are only one part of the room and all other components must be assessed as well.



Solutions

1. Thicker Glass. The greater the glass thickness, the better the noise reduction for low frequencies such as traffic noise.

2. Laminated Glass. The resin interlayer in laminated glass is particularly effective at dampening which provides superior sound reduction.

3. Double Glazing. The incorporation of one or two layers of laminated glass or glass of differing thickness into an IGU will provide excellent results. Standard float glass in an IGU will not provide good noise reduction. For float glass to be effective, an air gap of 100mm to 200mm needs to be provided.



Definitions

Sound is measured in dB (decibels) and every 10dB is perceived as twice as loud, therefore a 20dB reduction would reduce the noise by four times.

The noise performance of a building system is called the Sound Transmission Class (STC). An STC rating of 45 means that the element reduces the sound that passes through it by 45dB.

The Building Code of Australia (BCA) specifies the minimum STC requirements between adjoining dwellings. The BCA uses a sound reduction index (Rw) which is directly equivalent to STC.

Therefore: STC of 45 = Rw of 45 = 45dB

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