For the use of acoustic assessment of machinery, a global index of acoustic quality has been developed. Acoustic quality index is considered as a product of the following partial indices: sound power index, index of distance between the workstation and the machine, radiation directivity index, impulse and impact noise index and noise spectrum index. Each partial index always assumes positive value. If the value of global index does not exceed 1, the noise of the assessed machine will not exceed the admissible value of A-weighted sound pressure level at the workstation. Experimental tests were carried out in order to determine the values of global indices for a group of engine-generators, with the use of inversion method allowing for the determination of sound power level. The correctness of the determined values of indices was confirmed by the results of A-weighted sound pressure level measurements, at the hypothetically assumed workstations in simulated in situ conditions.
The analysis of available literature indicates that tests of products sound quality, which would not involve participation of groups of listeners supposed to evaluate the sounds emitted by these products, are neither carried out in Poland, nor in the world. That results in the fact that the products sound quality is determined on the basis of psychoacoustic information and comprises both objective and subjective factors of sound perception. With reference to those factors and to different life cycles of the machine, an original definition of the “sound quality of the machine” has been developed and presented in this article. The global index of the acoustic quality of the machine, accounting for the relations between the noise level at the workstation and the selected parameters characterising both the machine's sound activity and the working environment, was adopted as the measure of the sound quality of the machine. The experiments that followed confirmed the appropriateness of the assessment made with the use of the global index of acoustic quality.
Efficient ultrasonic noise reduction by using enclosures requires the knowledge of absorbing properties of materials in the frequency range above 4 kHz. However, standardized methods enable determination of absorption coefficients of materials in the frequency range up to 4 kHz. For this reason, it is proposed to carry out measurements of the sound absorption properties of materials in the free field by means of a tone-burst technique in the frequency range from 4 kHz to 40 kHz at angles of incidence varying from 0° to 60°. The absorption coefficient of a material is calculated from the reflection coefficient obtained by reflecting a tone-burst from both a perfectly reflecting panel and a combination of this panel and the sample of the tested material. The tests results show that mineral wool and polyurethane open-cell foam possess very good absorbing properties in this frequency range.
In 2010, the Central Institute for Labour Protection - National Research Institute celebrated the 60th anniversary of its activity. Primary objectives of the Institute have been and continue to be the protection of employees against any hazards at work stations. Among the numerous hazards, vibroacoustic ones are becoming prevailing. Therefore, one can now dare to say that the 60 years of activity of the Central Institute for Labour Protection have also meant 60 years of preventing noise and vibration in the working environment. For those 60 years of activity, Central Institute for Labour Protection has been associated with outstanding acousticians and vibration specialists. The first chairperson of the Scientific Council of the Central Institute for Labour Protection was Professor Ignacy Malecki, one of the most outstanding Polish scientists. Chairpersons of the Council have also included Professor Adam Lipowczan and Professor Zbigniew Engel and the members of the Council have included Professor Stefan Ziemba and Professor Jerzy Sadowski.