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Sound Absorption Properties of Acoustic Materials Defined With Updated Test

ASTM C 423, Standard Test Method for Sound Absorption and Sound Absorption Coefficients by the Reverberation Room Method has been revised to:

• Update and modernize the instrumentation;

• Provide a more uniform testing methodology;

• Introduce the sound absorption average as a more comprehensive single-number rating of material and product sound absorption; and

• Include laboratory qualification and quality assurance requirements.

C 423 provides “an up-to-date test method that yields more accurate, more comprehensive, and more consistent data on the sound absorption properties of acoustical materials,” says Steven Brown, senior principal engineer, Steelcase Inc., Grand Rapids, Mich., and chairman of ASTM Committee E33 on Environmental Acoustics. The revised standard has been re-issued as a separate document for acoustical lab operators, architects, interior designers, noise control engineers and other specifiers of sound control materials, as well as manufacturers of acoustical ceilings, open plan furniture, and other acoustical products.

A task group of Subcommittee E33.01 on Sound Absorption upgraded the test method. They included acousticians, members of industrial research and development, technical support, acoustical labs, and providers of acoustical and sound-control material.

Data produced by the test method can improve applications of products used in the building construction, architectural, acoustic materials manufacturing, and noise control industries.

For further technical information, contact Steven M. Brown, Senior Principal Engineer, Steelcase Inc., CD-5E-16, 6100 East Paris, S.E., Caledonia, MI 49316 (616/698-4551; fax: 616/698-4131). Committee E33 meets Oct. 23-24 in Orlando, Fla. For meeting or membership details, contact Staff Manager Steve Mawn, ASTM (610/832-9726). //

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