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Regulations, guidelines, and standards regarding environmental noise in Indonesia

With all the development, industrial activities and community activities in Indonesia, noise has become one of the problems that arises in some places in Indonesia. Indonesia already has some regulations, guidelines, and standards to safeguard the noise levels. This is important mainly to support a healthy environment for the people, and also to improve budgeting certainty of projects that will produce noise during their operations.

The following are the regulations, standards and guidelines related with environmental noise in Indonesia.

Environmental Noise Regulations

Regulations regarding environmental noise generally can be categorized into two types which are emission regulation and immission regulation. Emission regulations regulate how much noise can a noise source produces noise, while immission regulation regulates how much noise can a receiver or area receives noise.

Examples of noise emission regulations in Indonesia are:

  • Decree of Minister of Environment and Forestry No. 56 year 2019 (P.56/MENLHK/SETJEN/KUM.1/10/2019) regarding noise limits of new types of motorized vehicles and in production M category, N category, and L category.
  • Decree of Minister of Transportation of Republic of Indonesia No. PM 62, year 2021 regarding civil aviation safety section 36 regarding noise standard dan type certification and aircraft airworthiness

The two ministerial decrees above regulate how much noise can be produced by vehicles that are used on road and aircraft that can operate within Indonesian territory.

The regulation that regulates environmental noise level at the receiver is:

  • Decree of Minister of Environment No. 48 year 1996 about noise level limits

 

The decree states the noise limits that are allowed for the receiver according to its function – for example for residential area, the noise limit is 55 dBA and for industrial area 70 dBA. More details on the following link: https://www.konsultasi-akustik.com/en/environmental-noise-measurement/

 

Beside the regulations above, there are other requirement such as one written on Government Regulation (PP) No. 36 year 2005 regarding implementation rules of the Law No. 28 year 2002 regarding buildings. One of the points require noise reduction means for toll roads in residential area or existing city centers.

 

Guidelines regarding Environmental Noise

 

Beside the regulation, there are some technical guidelines that are written by Ministry of Public Works as follows:

  • Technical guidelines Ditjen Bina Marga No. 36 year 1999: Noise barrier planning guidelines
    In these guidelines, criteria to categorize area as safe, moderate and high risk are given. Moreover, the guidelines also state measurement techniques for measurement beside road and common type, shape and material of noise barriers.
  • Construction and building guidelines Pd T-10-2004-B: Road traffic noise prediction.

These guidelines adopt calculations from Calculation of Road Traffic Noise (CoRTN, UK, 1998) which contain noise calculation method based on traffic volume and speed. There are also corrections for heavy vehicle percentage, speed, gradient and road surface. From this calculation, propagation to receiver can be calculated considering distance, screening, reflection and angle of view.

  • Construction and building guidelines Pd T-16-2005-B: Mitigation of road traffic noise

The guidelines lay out methods to mitigate noise from traffic which is based on measurement (which are written on Permen LH No. 48 year 1996 and guidelines No.36 year 1999 above) and can also be based on predictions (Following construction and building guidelines Pd T-10-2004-B)

 

Environmental Noise Standards

 

Beside the regulations and guidelines, there are Indonesian National Standard (SNI) document that are written by National Standardization Body (BSN) that are related to environmental noise:

  • SNI 19-6878-2002 – Road traffic noise test L10 and Leq
    This standard contains test method which state testing procedure and data processing steps to calculate LA to L10 and Leq
  • SNI 8427:2017 – Pengukuran tingkat kebisingan lingkungan
    This standard contains measurement method that is similar to Kepmen LH No.48 year 1996 which is to measure noise samples for 10 minutes across 24 hours period. Noise levels then can be calculated based on its time slice which are Ls (daytime noise), Lm (nighttime noise), and Lsm (day-night noise, with 5 dB penalty for nighttime).
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SCOPE OF ARCHITECTURAL ACOUSTIC CONSULTANT’S WORK

What should an architectural acoustic consulting firm do? This question is very commonly asked when an acoustician is asked to submit a work proposal for a project. In this article, we will describe the scope of work of an acoustic consultant with reference to the type of mixed-use high-end building project. Because in this type of project an architectural acoustic consultant is required to be able to describe all the scope of work in one project with high complexity.

Details of the scope of work of acoustic consultants in mixed-use high-end building projects are as follows:

1. Criteria Formulation
At the beginning of the project, the acoustic consultant must recommend design criteria/targets for various rooms and areas within the building such as retail, apartment units both for bedrooms and living rooms, and commercial areas such as meeting rooms, multifunction rooms, spas, fitness, restaurants. , club lounges, etc. These criteria are determined based on studies and summaries of the applicable standards in the country, international standards, client recommendations, and the building operator concerned.

2. Schematic
With so many rooms that fall into the scope of work of an acoustic consultant with this type of project, it is highly recommended that an acoustician provide schematic designs for several important rooms for the attention of other consultants in the early stages of the project. Examples are MEP rooms, building structure connections, placement of HVAC equipment above the ceiling, and draft wall partition configurations.

3. Noise Review from the Environment Around the Building
The acoustic consultant must review potential sources of noise from aircraft, train stations, transportation on highways, outdoor MEP equipment, and all things around the building that have the potential to interfere with audial comfort to the interior of the building to ensure the targeted acoustic criteria are achieved. At this stage the acoustician must be able to convey the results of modeling and simulations for several points around the building in the form of drawings that can be understood by clients and other consultants. At this stage, a building fa konfigurasiade configuration can be recommended that takes into account the noise from the area around the building.

4. Noise HVAC (duct-borne)
Discussion and review of noise from all HVAC be it from air handling unit (AHU), axial and centrifugal fans, fan coil unit (FCU), etc. The ducting system will be analyzed to determine the noise level in the critical room from the nearest diffuser ducting system outlet. From this analysis, the need for silencers, lagging or duct linings will be recommended in order to achieve the acoustic criteria that have been determined. The analysis will be carried out on all HVAC systems without exception, with the greatest attention being on residential areas, spas, hotels, etc.

5. Sound Propagation in Building Structures (Structure-Borne)
All matters relating to the propagation or vibration of sound via the building structure, whether it is due to human footsteps on the top floor or vibrations from the installation of MEP machines above the ceiling or floor. The acoustic consultant must be able to evaluate according to the natural frequency of the building structure and provide recommendations on floor slab elements to meet operator and client standards applied.

6. Machine Vibration Control
The acoustic consultant should conduct an in-depth discussion on the vibration isolator for the installed machines. This is done by taking into account the deflection of the floor slab and its relationship to the static and dynamic loads of the machine (eg chiller, pump, cooling tower, AHU, etc.). In addition, ensuring the insulator is efficient to withstand vibrations to the building structure.

7. Room Insulation
Discussion on the isolation of certain rooms by providing technical calculations both with the “indoor room” and “floating floor” methods so that sound and vibration do not propagate to all elements of the building, especially the room around the isolated area.

8. Acoustic Interior
Reviewing and calculating room acoustic parameters on interior design elements of commercial spaces such as ballrooms, meeting rooms, and other areas where the clarity of speech or music is crucial.

9. Detailed Drawing
The acoustic consultant must provide or recommend specifications for building skin elements such as faades, walls and floor slabs in CAD format on a cut or plan basis. This will make it easier for relevant consultants to apply these specifications in their construction drawings.

10. Noise Isolation Due to Impact
Collisions in the fitness area, whether it’s due to aerobic activity or lifting weights, are a special concern for acoustic consultants. In addition to different forms of acoustic treatment, the time span of these activities must also be included in detailed technical calculations, and of course measurable.

11. Review of Related Consultant Drawings
After all acoustic treatments have been adapted to construction drawings by the relevant consultant, the acoustician must review all these drawings to ensure that all treatments have been described correctly, before entering the tender phase.

12. Coordination with Selected Contractors
The acoustic consultant must allocate time to coordinate the design and answer questions from the selected contractor and sign all forms related to material approval if it is in accordance with the acoustic intentions.

13. Final assessment
Before handing over the project to the next party, the acoustic consultant must conduct a final assessment of the building elements designed by the consultant. Next, compare the measured value to the design target and pre-determined criteria.

by Ramadhan Akmal Putra 

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Asia Noise News Building Accoustics Building Acoustics Environment Home Industrial Noise and Vibration Product News Noise-th Uncategorized Vibration Virtual Data Room

Accelerometer mounting

One of the challenges in measuring vibration using accelerometer is how to mount the accelerometer on the surface of the object that is being measured. Choosing the proper mounting can affect both to the measurement results and practicality when we are conducting the measurement.

 

Accelerometer mounting affects the measurement results because it can shift the resonance frequency of the accelerometer. Accelerometers have a significant amplification factor at its resonance frequency. This implies that in conducting measurements using accelerometer, it is important to choose mounting techniques that does not shift the resonance frequency into our frequency of interest.

 

Generally, there are four ways to mount accelerometer which are:

  1. Stud mounting: this technique is done by bolting the accelerometer into the object. This option is often considered as the mounting technique that produces the best measurement result compared to other options. Stud mounting has a high resonance frequency that in most cases a lot higher than our frequency of interest. To increase the performance of stud mounting, coupling fluid such as oil, petroleum jelly or beeswax can be used.

The downside of this technique is that not all object has a possible location to be bolted at the surface. If this is the case, then we will need to modify the surface and might leave a hole on the object.

  1. Adhesive: there are few adhesives that are commonly used to mount accelerometers such as epoxy (usually chosen for permanent mounting), wax, glue, and double-sided tape. Use of adhesive has lower resonance frequency compared to stud mounting, but in majority of cases still high enough that it does not affect the measurement at the frequency of interest. Of course, this depends on the type of adhesive that is being used as well.

Usage of adhesive however, especially for temporary mounting, has its own problem which is it can leave stain on the surface of the object that we are measuring, as well as on the accelerometer itself.

Another option of mounting related with adhesive is to use adhesive mounting pad, which is a pad that can be mounted on the surface that we want to measure using adhesive, and then we can mount the accelerometer on the pad. This will allow us to move one accelerometer to few locations more easily. From practicality perspective, adhesive mounting pad has an advantage if we want to repeat the measurement. Also, by using adhesive mounting pad, we avoid direct contact of adhesive to the accelerometer so that it will not need cleaning.

  1. Magnet: For metal surfaces, one of the options that is easy and does not leave stain is by using magnetic mounting base on the accelerometer so that we can attach the accelerometer to metal. This is the reason magnetic base is one of the best options especially for short-term and temporary measurement on metal.

However, this mounting technique produces lower resonant frequency compared to the other two options that we have discussed above. If the frequency that we want to measure is high enough, say above 1 kHz, this mounting technique might influence the measurement results.

  1. Handheld: In some of the cases, the three options above are not possible to be chosen, and it leaves us with the last option which is holding the accelerometer by hand. In this kind of cases, a probe tip can be used so that we can put pressure by hand on the surface that we are measuring easier.

We will have to pay more attention to the frequency range that we are measuring if this mounting technique is used. Because this option will reduce our frequency range significantly, generally only in the range of 10 – 100 Hz. 

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Asia Noise News Building Acoustics Environment Industrial Vibration

Building Vibration Limits in Indonesia

A lot of activities and businesses have the potential to have negative effects to their environment because of the vibration that they produce. For example, construction (for example during piling), mining and and other vibration-generating activities. This vibration can disturb the comfort and health of people around it, and even can have destructive effects to nearby buildings.

In Indonesia, the vibration limit is regulated through Ministerial Decree of Ministry of Environment No. 49 Year 1996. This regulation was made to ensure healthy environment for human and other living creatures to live in. Consequently, the vibration generated from human activities need to be regulated.

In this regulation, businesses and activities are required to:

  1. Comply to the vibration limit in the decree. This is required for businesses and activities to obtain certain relevant permits to be able to operate.
  2. Use vibration reduction equipment
  3. Report vibration monitoring activities at least once in 3 (three) months to the Governor, Minister, Government agencies that are responsible to control environmental impact, other technical institutions that is responsible for the activities and other organizations that might need the vibration monitoring report.

The vibration limit is separated into few parts which are:

  1. Vibration limits for health and comfort
  2. Mechanical vibration limits based on its destructive effects
  3. Mechanical vibration limits based on building types
  4. Shock limits

The following table and graphs is the vibration limit for health and comfort:

Conversion:

Acceleration = (2πf)2 x displacement

Velocity = 2πf x displacement

The graphic representation of the table above is as follows:

The table below is the vibration limits based on the destructive effects:

As seen above, the peak velocity limit from the vibration is separated into 4 categories which are:

  • Category A: non-destructive
  • Category B: Possibly destructive for plastering (crack, or in certain cases the plaster can fell off the wall) 
  • Category C: Possibly destructive for structural components that bear loads
  • Category D: High risk of destruction of load bearing walls

The following graph is the vibration limit based on destructive effects in a graphical form:

Mechanical vibration limit can also be categorized into the types of buildings. The buildings are categorized into 3 which are:

  1. Buildings for commercial, industrial, and other similar use.
  2. Residential and other buildings with similar design and usage
  3. Structures that are sensitive to vibration and cannot be categorized into category 1 and 2, for example preserved buildings with high cultural value

Below is the vibration limits for the building category above:

The table below is shock limit for buildings:

CategoryBuilding TypeMaximum velocity (mm/s)
1Old buildings with high historical value2
2Buildings with existing defects, cracks can be seen on the walls5
3Buildings with good condition, minor cracks on plaster is acceptable10
4Buildings with high structural strength (for example industrial building which is made from concrete and steel)10 – 40

The ministerial decree also describe the measurement and analysis method for vibration as follows:

  1. Instruments:
    1. Vibration transducer (Accelerometer or seismometer)
    2. Vibration measurement device or analysis device (Vibration meter or vibration analyzer)
    3. 1/3 octave or narrow band filter
    4. Signal recorder
    5. FFT Analyzer
  2. Measurement procedure:
    1. Vibration measurement related with health and comfort:
      • Place transducer on the floor or other vibrating surface, and connect it to the measuring device with filtration
      • Set the measuring instruments to measure displacement. If the measuring instruments do not have that on display, the conversion from acceleration or velocity can be used
      • Reading and recording is conducted for frequency between 4-63 Hz or with signal recording device
      • Measurement results with at least 13 data shall be plotted on graph
    2. Vibration measurement for structural health:
      • The measurement method is similar with the vibration measurement above, however the physical measure that is assessed is the peak velocity.
    3. Evaluation
      • The 13 data which are plotted on graph shall be compared with the vibration limits. The vibration is considered above the limit if the vibration level exceeds the limit at any frequency.

Definition

The definition used in the regulation of ministry of environment No 49 Year 1996 is as follows:

  1. Building structure is a part of building that is planned, calculated, and functioned to:
    • Support any kind of load (static load, dynamic load, and temporary load)
    • Functioned for building’s stability as a whole. For example: frame and bearing wall
  2. Structure’s component is a part of a building structure that contributes to structure’s function. For example: beams, columns, and slab.
  3. Bearing wall is a building structure which is a vertical plane that is functioned to support loads on top of it such as slab or roof.
  4. Non-structure components are parts of building that is not planned or functioned to support load. For example partition walls, door and window frames, etc.

Destructive impact on structure and non-structure:

  1. Destructive impact on structure: Destructive impacts that can endanger building stability (for example destruction of columns that potentially make a building collapses)
  2. Destructive impact on non-structure: Not dangerous to building stability, but can be a danger for building occupants (for example: when a partition wall collapses, it will not make the building collapse, but can injure occupants)

Degree of building destruction:

  1. Light: not dangerous for building stability and can be fixed without reducing building’s strength
  2. Moderate: Destruction that can reduce structural strength. To fix this, added reinforcement must be used.
  3. Severe: Degree of destruction that can endanger the building and potentially makes the building collapses.

Written by:

Hizkia Natanael
Acoustic Engineer
Phone: +6221 5010 5025
Email: hizkia@geonoise.asia

Categories
Asia Noise News Building Accoustics Environment Industrial

Noise Level Prediction in Industry (Oil & Gas, Power Generation, Process, etc.)

Most industrial activities create noise that can be harmful to the environment as well as to their workers. To minimize this effect, governments, associations, and companies have created regulations, standards, and codes to set the allowable noise both inside the sites, that can be harmful to the workers, as well as to the environment. In a lot of cases, during the planning phase, the plant owner and project management want to be sure that the noise levels are acceptable. Since the plant is not built yet, what can be done is creating a noise model to simulate the plant, so that the noise levels can be predicted. In this article, we will explore how we can do so.

The first thing we must know is how much noise does the noise sources inside of the plant will emit. The noise source is usually described in two ways which is Sound Power Level (Lw or SWL), and Sound Pressure Level (Lp or SPL) in certain distance, most commonly Lp in 1 m distance. There are multiple ways to get this information for certain noise sources. First, if the equipment type and model have been chosen, the equipment manufacturer will normally report the noise level in their datasheet. However, this is not usually the case with most of noise predictions since the noise study is normally done before the equipment suppliers are appointed. So, the second way to be able to predict the noise emission is by following empirical formulas that are developed by researchers. You can find such formulas in some textbooks, journals, and papers. For rotating parts, you will need its rated power and rotational speed to be able to estimate the noise emission. 

For example, in the speed range of 3000-3600 rpm, the noise level of a pump with drive motor power above 75 kW can be predicted using the following equation:

Suppose a pump with rotational speed of 3000 rpm and 100 kW, according to the formula, it can be estimated that the noise level at 1 m from the pump would be 92 dB. And suppose the noise source can be considered as point source on the ground (hemisphere propagation), the sound power level of the pump can be calculated using the following formula:

Where r is the distance from source to receiver

And in this case, the predicted Lw would be 100 dB.

Thirds, noise measurement to a similar equipment can also be an option to be able to determine the noise level of the new equipment. Another option, in some countries, there are noise emission limit for certain equipment, you can use that limit if it is applicable for your project.

After the Lw of all noise sources is obtained, we want to calculate the noise levels (the Lp) at the receivers. There are some standards which procedure can be followed to calculate this. Few of which are ISO 9613-2, NORD 2000, CNOSSOS EU, and many others. Most of the standards consider some factors to the calculation such as distance, atmospheric absorption, ground reflection, screening effect (from barriers and obstacles) and other factors such as volume absorption from vegetation, industrial site, etc. Most consultants and projects will require a software such as SoundPLAN to do this calculation.

Depending the project, there are few types of noise limit which compliance will need to be ensured. The most common ones are environmental noise limit, noise exposure limit, area noise limit and absolute noise limit. Besides, the noise level during emergency is also modelled so that the information can be used for safety and PAGA (Public Address and General Alarm) study.

Environmental noise limit is usually calculated for the plant’s contribution to the plant’s boundary as well as to the nearest sensitive receiver such as residential and school near the plant. How this is accessed depends on the regulation applicable on the plant area. In Indonesia for example, the noise limit for residential area is Lsm 55 dBA and industrial area is Lsm 70 dBA. Lsm is a measure like Ldn, but the night noise level addition is 5 dB instead of the 10 dB addition that most other countries, especially Europeans use. To ensure compliance with this regulation, the noise level at fence should be less than Lsm 70 dBA, and suppose there is a residential area nearby, the contribution from the site should be less than 55 dBA. It is also advisable to measure the existing noise level at the sensitive receivers to make the study more relevant to the situation. 

Noise exposure limit is the maximum exposure to noise that the workers get during their working period. In Indonesia, the noise exposure limit is 85 dBA for 8 working hours. To change the working hours, 3 dB exchange rate is used. For example, if the noise level in the plant is 88 dBA, then the workers can only work there for 4 hours, if it is 91 dBA, then the time limit is 2 hours, and so on. To extend the working hours on a noisy area, the options are to actually reduce the noise level by reducing the noise emission from the source or noise control at transmission (for example using barrier), or by usage of Hearing Protection Device (HPD) for the workers such as ear plugs and ear muffs. The noise exposure of workers after usage of HPD can be calculated using the following formula:

Where NRR is the noise reduction rating of the HPD in dB.

Different area might have different noise level limits, and therefore area noise limits are useful. For example, in an unmanned mechanical room, the noise level can be high, for instance 110 dBA. However, inside of the site office, the allowable noise level is much lower, for example 50 dBA. This noise level shall be calculated to ensure compliance with the noise limit. Different companies might have different limits for this to ensure their employees’ health and productivity. If the area is indoor and the noise source is outdoor, then the interior noise level can be estimated using standards such as ISO 12354-3. 

The absolute noise limit is the highest noise level allowable at the plant, and shall not be exceeded at any times, including emergency. In most cases, the absolute noise limit for impulsive sound is 140 dBA. To ensure compliance with this requirement, potential high-level noise shall be calculated, for example safety valves.

During emergency, different noise sources than normal situation will be activated, such as flare, blowdown valves, fire pumps, and other equipment. In such cases, the sound from the alarm and Public Address system must be able to be heard by the workers inside of the plant. Normally the target for the SPL from the PAGA system should be higher than 10 dB above the noise level. Therefore, the noise level during emergency in each area should be well-known. 

Categories
Asia Noise News Building Accoustics Environment Industrial

Noise Level Prediction in Industry (Oil & Gas, Power Generation, Process, etc.)

Most industrial activities create noise that can be harmful to the environment as well as to their workers. To minimize this effect, governments, associations, and companies have created regulations, standards, and codes to set the allowable noise both inside the sites, that can be harmful to the workers, as well as to the environment. In a lot of cases, during the planning phase, the plant owner and project management want to be sure that the noise levels are acceptable. Since the plant is not built yet, what can be done is creating a noise model to simulate the plant, so that the noise levels can be predicted. In this article, we will explore how we can do so.

The first thing we must know is how much noise does the noise sources inside of the plant will emit. The noise source is usually described in two ways which is Sound Power Level (Lw or SWL), and Sound Pressure Level (Lp or SPL) in certain distance, most commonly Lp in 1 m distance. There are multiple ways to get this information for certain noise sources. First, if the equipment type and model have been chosen, the equipment manufacturer will normally report the noise level in their datasheet. However, this is not usually the case with most of noise predictions since the noise study is normally done before the equipment suppliers are appointed. So, the second way to be able to predict the noise emission is by following empirical formulas that are developed by researchers. You can find such formulas in some textbooks, journals, and papers. For rotating parts, you will need its rated power and rotational speed to be able to estimate the noise emission. 

For example, in the speed range of 3000-3600 rpm, the noise level of a pump with drive motor power above 75 kW can be predicted using the following equation:

Suppose a pump with rotational speed of 3000 rpm and 100 kW, according to the formula, it can be estimated that the noise level at 1 m from the pump would be 92 dB. And suppose the noise source can be considered as point source on the ground (hemisphere propagation), the sound power level of the pump can be calculated using the following formula:

Where r is the distance from source to receiver

And in this case, the predicted Lw would be 100 dB.

Thirds, noise measurement to a similar equipment can also be an option to be able to determine the noise level of the new equipment. Another option, in some countries, there are noise emission limit for certain equipment, you can use that limit if it is applicable for your project.

After the Lw of all noise sources is obtained, we want to calculate the noise levels (the Lp) at the receivers. There are some standards which procedure can be followed to calculate this. Few of which are ISO 9613-2, NORD 2000, CNOSSOS EU, and many others. Most of the standards consider some factors to the calculation such as distance, atmospheric absorption, ground reflection, screening effect (from barriers and obstacles) and other factors such as volume absorption from vegetation, industrial site, etc. Most consultants and projects will require a software such as SoundPLAN to do this calculation.

Depending the project, there are few types of noise limit which compliance will need to be ensured. The most common ones are environmental noise limit, noise exposure limit, area noise limit and absolute noise limit. Besides, the noise level during emergency is also modelled so that the information can be used for safety and PAGA (Public Address and General Alarm) study.

Environmental noise limit is usually calculated for the plant’s contribution to the plant’s boundary as well as to the nearest sensitive receiver such as residential and school near the plant. How this is accessed depends on the regulation applicable on the plant area. In Indonesia for example, the noise limit for residential area is Lsm 55 dBA and industrial area is Lsm 70 dBA. Lsm is a measure like Ldn, but the night noise level addition is 5 dB instead of the 10 dB addition that most other countries, especially Europeans use. To ensure compliance with this regulation, the noise level at fence should be less than Lsm 70 dBA, and suppose there is a residential area nearby, the contribution from the site should be less than 55 dBA. It is also advisable to measure the existing noise level at the sensitive receivers to make the study more relevant to the situation. 

Noise exposure limit is the maximum exposure to noise that the workers get during their working period. In Indonesia, the noise exposure limit is 85 dBA for 8 working hours. To change the working hours, 3 dB exchange rate is used. For example, if the noise level in the plant is 88 dBA, then the workers can only work there for 4 hours, if it is 91 dBA, then the time limit is 2 hours, and so on. To extend the working hours on a noisy area, the options are to actually reduce the noise level by reducing the noise emission from the source or noise control at transmission (for example using barrier), or by usage of Hearing Protection Device (HPD) for the workers such as ear plugs and ear muffs. The noise exposure of workers after usage of HPD can be calculated using the following formula:

Where NRR is the noise reduction rating of the HPD in dB.

Different area might have different noise level limits, and therefore area noise limits are useful. For example, in an unmanned mechanical room, the noise level can be high, for instance 110 dBA. However, inside of the site office, the allowable noise level is much lower, for example 50 dBA. This noise level shall be calculated to ensure compliance with the noise limit. Different companies might have different limits for this to ensure their employees’ health and productivity. If the area is indoor and the noise source is outdoor, then the interior noise level can be estimated using standards such as ISO 12354-3. 

The absolute noise limit is the highest noise level allowable at the plant, and shall not be exceeded at any times, including emergency. In most cases, the absolute noise limit for impulsive sound is 140 dBA. To ensure compliance with this requirement, potential high-level noise shall be calculated, for example safety valves.

During emergency, different noise sources than normal situation will be activated, such as flare, blowdown valves, fire pumps, and other equipment. In such cases, the sound from the alarm and Public Address system must be able to be heard by the workers inside of the plant. Normally the target for the SPL from the PAGA system should be higher than 10 dB above the noise level. Therefore, the noise level during emergency in each area should be well-known. 

Written by:

Hizkia Natanael
Acoustic Engineer
Phone: +6221 5010 5025
Email: hizkia@geonoise.asia

Categories
Asia Noise News Building Accoustics Environment Industrial

Noise Level Prediction in Industry (Oil & Gas, Power Generation, Process, etc.)

Most industrial activities create noise that can be harmful to the environment as well as to their workers. To minimize this effect, governments, associations, and companies have created regulations, standards, and codes to set the allowable noise both inside the sites, that can be harmful to the workers, as well as to the environment. In a lot of cases, during the planning phase, the plant owner and project management want to be sure that the noise levels are acceptable. Since the plant is not built yet, what can be done is creating a noise model to simulate the plant, so that the noise levels can be predicted. In this article, we will explore how we can do so.

The first thing we must know is how much noise does the noise sources inside of the plant will emit. The noise source is usually described in two ways which is Sound Power Level (Lw or SWL), and Sound Pressure Level (Lp or SPL) in certain distance, most commonly Lp in 1 m distance. There are multiple ways to get this information for certain noise sources. First, if the equipment type and model have been chosen, the equipment manufacturer will normally report the noise level in their datasheet. However, this is not usually the case with most of noise predictions since the noise study is normally done before the equipment suppliers are appointed. So, the second way to be able to predict the noise emission is by following empirical formulas that are developed by researchers. You can find such formulas in some textbooks, journals, and papers. For rotating parts, you will need its rated power and rotational speed to be able to estimate the noise emission. 

For example, in the speed range of 3000-3600 rpm, the noise level of a pump with drive motor power above 75 kW can be predicted using the following equation:

Suppose a pump with rotational speed of 3000 rpm and 100 kW, according to the formula, it can be estimated that the noise level at 1 m from the pump would be 92 dB. And suppose the noise source can be considered as point source on the ground (hemisphere propagation), the sound power level of the pump can be calculated using the following formula:

Where r is the distance from source to receiver

And in this case, the predicted Lw would be 100 dB.

Thirds, noise measurement to a similar equipment can also be an option to be able to determine the noise level of the new equipment. Another option, in some countries, there are noise emission limit for certain equipment, you can use that limit if it is applicable for your project.

After the Lw of all noise sources is obtained, we want to calculate the noise levels (the Lp) at the receivers. There are some standards which procedure can be followed to calculate this. Few of which are ISO 9613-2, NORD 2000, CNOSSOS EU, and many others. Most of the standards consider some factors to the calculation such as distance, atmospheric absorption, ground reflection, screening effect (from barriers and obstacles) and other factors such as volume absorption from vegetation, industrial site, etc. Most consultants and projects will require a software such as SoundPLAN to do this calculation.

Depending the project, there are few types of noise limit which compliance will need to be ensured. The most common ones are environmental noise limit, noise exposure limit, area noise limit and absolute noise limit. Besides, the noise level during emergency is also modelled so that the information can be used for safety and PAGA (Public Address and General Alarm) study.

Environmental noise limit is usually calculated for the plant’s contribution to the plant’s boundary as well as to the nearest sensitive receiver such as residential and school near the plant. How this is accessed depends on the regulation applicable on the plant area. In Indonesia for example, the noise limit for residential area is Lsm 55 dBA and industrial area is Lsm 70 dBA. Lsm is a measure like Ldn, but the night noise level addition is 5 dB instead of the 10 dB addition that most other countries, especially Europeans use. To ensure compliance with this regulation, the noise level at fence should be less than Lsm 70 dBA, and suppose there is a residential area nearby, the contribution from the site should be less than 55 dBA. It is also advisable to measure the existing noise level at the sensitive receivers to make the study more relevant to the situation. 

Noise exposure limit is the maximum exposure to noise that the workers get during their working period. In Indonesia, the noise exposure limit is 85 dBA for 8 working hours. To change the working hours, 3 dB exchange rate is used. For example, if the noise level in the plant is 88 dBA, then the workers can only work there for 4 hours, if it is 91 dBA, then the time limit is 2 hours, and so on. To extend the working hours on a noisy area, the options are to actually reduce the noise level by reducing the noise emission from the source or noise control at transmission (for example using barrier), or by usage of Hearing Protection Device (HPD) for the workers such as ear plugs and ear muffs. The noise exposure of workers after usage of HPD can be calculated using the following formula:

Where NRR is the noise reduction rating of the HPD in dB.

Different area might have different noise level limits, and therefore area noise limits are useful. For example, in an unmanned mechanical room, the noise level can be high, for instance 110 dBA. However, inside of the site office, the allowable noise level is much lower, for example 50 dBA. This noise level shall be calculated to ensure compliance with the noise limit. Different companies might have different limits for this to ensure their employees’ health and productivity. If the area is indoor and the noise source is outdoor, then the interior noise level can be estimated using standards such as ISO 12354-3. 

The absolute noise limit is the highest noise level allowable at the plant, and shall not be exceeded at any times, including emergency. In most cases, the absolute noise limit for impulsive sound is 140 dBA. To ensure compliance with this requirement, potential high-level noise shall be calculated, for example safety valves.

During emergency, different noise sources than normal situation will be activated, such as flare, blowdown valves, fire pumps, and other equipment. In such cases, the sound from the alarm and Public Address system must be able to be heard by the workers inside of the plant. Normally the target for the SPL from the PAGA system should be higher than 10 dB above the noise level. Therefore, the noise level during emergency in each area should be well-known.