Acoustic insulation or noise control is an integral aspect of occupant comfort, be it a living or working space. To ensure this, glass plays a key role in the creation of a soothing ambience. Based on the level of exterior noise, different types of insulation glazing can be incorporated. Double-glazing with acoustic insulation glazing laminated glass can significantly reduce the noise entering the home through closed windows. In addition, it also provides adequate safety because it comes with the benefits of laminated glass that does not cause injury even in the event of a breakage.
Acoustic insulation glazing is achieved by using thick glass (monolithic or laminated with a safety film) as its mass absorbs the phonic vibrations. While it can provide the desired results, it can also make the windows heavier and even reduce the thermal performance. The total thickness of insulating glazing depends on the depth of the window rabbet (generally 24 or 28 mm). To install the glazing, increasing the thickness of the glass accordingly reduces the width of the gap containing the inert gas (e.g. argon), at the cost of thermal comfort.
The efficacy of a good acoustic glass can be gauged by how well it reduces the energy of a sound wave. The acoustic insulation properties of a window are measured with the ‘R’ sound reduction index. For example, a window with an R of 20 decibels should reduce a 60 dB outside traffic noise level to 40 dB within the room.
Noise pollution can be in any combination of low, medium or high frequency sounds. Some types of frequencies are easier to block or reduce. High pitched sounds (carried by short sound waves) are easier to absorb but reducing low frequency noise such as traffic can be more difficult. Because Noise pollution comes with different frequencies, it is important to select the acoustic insulation properties of the window required according to the frequency or pitch of the noise to be blocked, along with the desired number of decibels to be reduced.
The sound insulation of a double glazing window can be improved by having a wide cavity between the glass panes, using different thicknesses of the glass panes, using a thicker glass, incorporating an efficient insulating window frame and using specially laminated acoustic glass.
Acoustic glass is a sandwich of two or more sheets of glass, heat or pressure bonded together with one or more acoustic polyvinyl butyral (PVB) interlayers which serve as a noise dampener, weakening the energy of the sound waves as they travel through the glass. Acoustic glass provides insulation for impact and airborne noise while ensuring the safety and security that comes with laminated glass
Windows, patio doors, skylights, conservatories and internal screens and partitions. It can also be incorporated within double glazing window ranging in thickness from 26mm - 40mm, as well as single glazed applications from 6.8mm to 12.8 mm in thickness.
The acoustic qualities of windows are determined by the glazing but also by the type of frame, assembly, shutters and how the entire unit is installed. Acoustic insulation glazing must be mounted in an effective and well-installed frame. The acoustic performance of glass is not affected by, filling insulation glazing with argon to improve the thermal insulation, the deposit on one of the panes of glass of a solar control or thermal insulation coating, glass tempering and the position of the two panes of glass, irrespective of whether they are placed on the interior or exterior of the insulation glazing.