Architectural Acoustics And Noise Control
Acoustech Consulting is a South African based consulting company specializing in architectural acoustics and environmental noise prediction & control. Acoustech was founded by owner & director Jean Knoppersen. After serving as one of the founding members of Pro Acoustic Consulting Engineers, he established Acoustech in 2015, bringing with him over 30 years experience in the acoustics industry.
Built on a foundation of passion for what we do, and solid experience across a wide range of sectors, Acoustech strives to develop practical, budget-conscious solutions and strategies best suited to our clients needs, whether regulatory, standards (SANS or international) driven, or to their own custom requirements.
As an independent consulting firm, end user experience is at the heart of what we do, guiding us in our commitment to bringing to the table what is truly needed for every project.
With a national reach, we have offices in Johannesburg and Durban, and a representative in Mauritius, and have completed projects in Africa and Indian Ocean islands.
What We Do
WHAT DO ACOUSTIC CONSULTANTS DO ANYWAY?
Most people we talk to think that acoustic consultants /engineers are only called in for cinemas, performing arts spaces and recording studios, however, we get involved in a variety of building spaces including offices, conference facilities, hospitals, hotels, universities, airports, houses, courts, retail, sporting venues and industrial, to name some.
We find in Architectural Acoustics that all spaces have an ACOUSTIC SIGNATURE shaped by a number of physical parameters which either impedes /detracts from or reinforces /complements the spaces intended function. This is more obvious in the case of a live performance venue or recording studio, but not so much for an open plan office. How does one achieve an acceptable level of privacy in an open plan office, or an enclosed office for that matter? Are there acoustic standards or engineering best practices to feed into the design? And how does the adjacent plant room, building facade, interior finishes specification, major road nearby, HVAC system, and floor plan layout affect this, and ultimately to what extent might the acoustics affect a company’s productivity and staff morale and retention down the line? This is where we come in. We must treat ACOUSTIC COMFORT with the same importance as lighting, thermal comfort and indoor air quality.
Picture the excitement of patrons feeling the cinema shake and resonate during an epic explosion during a film! On the other hand, imagine the surprise of an explosion from the adjacent cinema or annoying traffic noise from the highway outside while watching an intimate dialogue in a drama film. Not so great! Is it merely 'acoustic treatment' that is required (and it is required for achieving acceptable reverberation criteria inside the space) or is effective sound insulation inherent in the very construction of the cinema complex itself?
Noise control is also often needed in the OUTDOOR ENVIRONMENT and in industrial work places like factories, and can have consequences if left unchecked. Think of traffic highways close to a newly developed residential complex or estate, a high discharge underground mine extraction fan near a farmstead or town, or perhaps a diesel generator from the retail complex across the road running during 'loadshedding' on what would otherwise be a quiet suburban evening! Or might your employees be risking permanent hearing loss because of machinery noise levels? Again, this is where we come in, and fortunately there are in most cases ways to MITIGATE NOISE to acceptable levels through analysis and engineering design. Even better, environmental noise levels can be predicted by acoustic simulation and abated by engineering methods, design and other mitigation strategies before a project or procurement even goes ahead, saving both time & money by eliminating your risk.
These are just some of the many examples the way acoustics and noise can affect our day to day life, and is what we talk about, work enthusiastically on, and find satisfaction in every day as consultants. If you would like to find out more or to setup a meeting please do contact us.
Equipped with an inventory of fully compliant, SANAS calibrated equipment and industry standard room modelling software, our growing portfolio and experience in building projects allows us to take on any size project.
From architectural and mechanical system design reviews, complete building acoustics design and specification through to in-situ testing, we will provide the best advice and designs having considered all options, and, most importantly - guaranty the results! We also offer turnkey solutions for projects with critical acoustic requirements such as film, television, radio and music studios.
Building shell, facade and partition sound insulation design (SANS10218 & SANS10103)
Building services noise control
In-situ testing - partition sound insulation (ISO140-5), reverberation time (RT60) & impact insulation (ISO140-7)
Provision of baseline acoustic criteria for building projects & brand specific standards
Plant machinery & systems vibration isolation
Diagnostic & predictive room acoustic modeling (Design for RT60, EDT, STI & audio systems)
Green Star surveys & assessments (IEQ-12 design & audits)
Evacuation system design & testing
Studio design (TV / film / music / radio), project management & turnkey solutions
Our field experience and knowledge of local and national regulations, combined with a solid inventory of Class 1 SANAS calibrated equipment and industry leading noise prediction software allows us to tackle any environmental noise project.
From monitoring & reporting to full blown noise impact studies, noise prediction modelling and mitigation strategies & designs including project management on implementation, there are no limits on the project size and scope.
Detailed grid noise mapping & noise prediction and mitigation simulation modeling
Noise impact studies & assessments for prospective developments (Construction & Operational phases)
Environmental noise surveys & reporting
Building systems noise emission control to SANS10103, local noise regulations & noise nuisance bylaws
Construction noise monitoring & reporting
Small & large scale industrial noise mitigation design, validation & project management
Event noise monitoring & noise management planning
Environmental noise impact assessment auditing
Drafting of residential estate & gated community noise rules / regulations
Acoustech Consulting is an independent consulting firm, meaning we do not push any particular product or system, and do not supply products. Keeping up to date with new technologies and products and systems available on the local and international market, we work closely with architects, engineers, building owners, developers and facilities directors to provide the most appropriate solutions for the specific projects acoustic requirements.
We try to get involved in projects from as early as possible because a small upfront investment will almost always save you a lot more in the long run. Our reviews and proposed solutions often involve important input for consideration by the structural, mechanical and electrical consultants, quantity surveyors, and of course the architects for built environment projects. If our involvement begins after the project is completed, we can through detailed analysis and diagnostics provide the most appropriate remedial solutions to bring existing sound or noise problems into check.
Our involvement requires us to be appointed, based on detailed scope and fee proposals accepted by the client after preliminary stakeholder meetings in which detailed requirements are discussed. We feel that managing our clients expectations early on is equally important as our level of service and engineering excellence.
The project outcomes are normally focused around South African acoustic standards (SANS) and noise regulations. Where local standards are insufficient, international standards (ISO, BS, ANSI, AS/NZ, WHO) and engineering best practices are adopted.
To find out more please contact us - we would be happy to discuss your query.
Depending on the project requirements and budget, our involvement may include any of the following;
Full Project Appointment
Appointment as acoustic engineering consultant for project from concept to completion
Analysis of existing building elements and systems acoustic performance including construction techniques, partitions, façades, HVAC systems & generator plants
Analysis, Diagnostics & Assessments
Detailed analysis (octave and third octave band), diagnostics and assessments to local & international acoustic building standards criteria
Design & Specification
Acoustic engineering design, specification and mitigation design based on review calculations and computer aided engineering. (Architectural & Environmental)
Noise Impact Study Specialist
Appointment as specialist consultant for noise impact studies & assessments for projects triggering EIA's
Appointment to perform noise monitoring, reporting, surveys, Green Star audits & environmental noise impact assessments
Site meetings and inspections
Completion acoustic measurements, RT60 testing, in-situ testing, & validation
Acoustics '101' training workshops for architectural and engineering firms (free)
How We Work
JEAN KNOPPERSEN Pr. Eng
Director & Principal Consultant, Pr. Eng, GDE, MSAIEE
Jean brings 35 years of invaluable experience to Acoustech Consulting as Principal Consultant and Director in the Johannesburg office.
082 456 0977
Director & Consultant, AMIOA
Having completed his acoustics studies through the Institute of Acoustics in the UK, Oliver brings vital acoustic theory application and practical acoustics experience as Director in the Johannesburg office.
082 807 4895
Consultant, BSc Eng (Mech)
With a mechanical engineering degree and musical background, Warren offers a wide range of acoustics experience ranging from mechanical system noise mitigation and architectural internal acoustics to environmental noise studies. He currently heads the Durban branch.
084 817 2542