The workers at this vegetable factory in Cambridgshire were being exposed to high levels of industrial noise that is to be expected in a factory environment. The design of the factory, however, was not conducive to absorbing, or at least mitigating the concentrated levels of high decibel noise emitted by the equipment in the factory.
The factory’s highly reverberant steel curtain walling projected the machinery noise around the room rapidly, creating a lengthy reverberation time and an uncomfortable work environment, despite the use of protective equipment.
The factory needed a significant amount of sound absorption on its surfaces to mop up the high levels of noise generated by machinery, but to also cover most of the reflective surfaces in the space.
Considering the area was used for food production, hygiene was of foremost concern to G’s Growers. The acoustic solution had to be one that didn’t attract contaminants and that could be easily cleaned with disinfecting chemicals. Resonics installed a patterned grid of Hygiene Foodtec Wall C3 panels, designed specifically for use in the food and beverage industries, restaurants and catering kitchens.
Feedback from factory workers is that the space is now far more comfortable to work in. The Class A absorptive capabilities of the panels has allowed immediate mechanical noise to be diffused almost immediately. Additional noise is no longer projected to nearby reverberant surfaces due to the installation of sound absorbing panels on adjacent surfaces.
Previously, Packhouse B was considered a “sound box”, but now the high-frequency absorption performance of the panels means that a significant portion of this sound energy has been removed from the working space. Previously the noise level at 8 kHz was around 78 dBZ , now it is closer to 71 dBZ, remembering that a 10 dB reduction in noise level is equivalent to a halving of the loudness.