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How do sound-absorbing screens work?Bruneau

Sound levels in business offices can be reduced in various manners. Acoustic panels that are mounted on the walls or the ceiling are one possibility, but this is often a drastic change. Mobile sound-absorbing screens are often used as cost-efficient alternatives that are easy to install. Indeed, these screens are not only sound insulating, they also create the required privacy and often improve the speaking and sound quality in call centers, conference rooms and open-plan offices.

Sound-absorbing screens stop sound from travelling. This does not mean that sound disappears, but stays mainly on one side, i.e. the side of the source. Part of it can be absorbed by the screen (mostly or often limited), but most of it is reflected back. One therefore measures the difference between the sound entering on one side to the sound that penetrates the screen and reaches the other side.

To be able to work in a quiet office, the necessary measures must be taken to reduce 2 types of sound:

  • air sound: sound from a source that directly causes waves in the air, such as a telephone or voices;
  • contact sound: sound from a source that is caused to vibrate first (a wall or floor), which causes this sound to propagate in the construction and to radiate noise in another room, such as footsteps on floors or stairs.

Mobile sound-absorbing screens ensure that the sound does not bounce back but is absorbed by the screen. For those purposes, the screens make use of sound-absorbing materials - in the case of the Spacia screen, this is a Newtech foam layer. This acoustic insulation ensures that passing sound waves are neutralised.

How is sound neutralised? Sound moves like water: if you throw a stone in a pond, that stone will make ripples in the water, which will become weaker as they are further removed from the source - until they disappear completely. If you throw a stone in a glass of water, the ripples will quickly reach the edge of the glass and they will be stopped by the sides of the glass. To a certain extent, this is how sound-insulating screens work.

The sound-absorbing screens are filled with minuscule air cells. When sound waves reach these air cells, there is friction and the waves quickly disappear, which causes the decibel level to decrease significantly. The remaining energy is converted into heat - although you will not really notice this.

Sound insulation therefore works like a trap for noise. The air cells absorb the energy caused by noise. Correctly installed mobile screens ensure that the sound around you is effectively reduced and therefore limits the noise nuisance for you and your colleagues.

Sound insulation therefore works like a trap for noise. The air cells absorb the energy caused by noise. Correctly installed mobile screens ensure that the sound around you is effectively reduced and therefore limits the noise nuisance for you and your colleagues.