Belgian Building Research Institute (BBRI) has selected Actran acoustic simulation software developed by a company of MSC Software corporation, FFT, in an attempt to validate acoustic predictions for buildings.

The acoustic simulation tool helps architects to validate the accuracy of acoustic predictions.

BBRI head of laboratory Charlotte Crispin said: "We used Actran to simulate in-line and corner structural waves transmission because of Actran’s proven ability to provide accurate results over a broad application range and because it is so easy to use.

The formula predicts the vibration reduction index, Kij, which determines the flanking sound reduction between two adjacent rooms for in-line and corner transmission in T-junctions, X-junctions and H-junctions.

"The new formula developed is based on the characteristic moment-impedances of the junction walls."

Belgian acoustics standards for dwellings are said to present major challenges for architects, and ISO 10848 defines a long and expensive process for measuring Kij through physical testing.

Normally, architects and acoustic consultants use empirical formulas set out in the EN 12354 standard for new buildings design, due to the high cost and time involved making physical measurements.

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As part of research activity supported by the Belgian Federal Government (NBN), BBRI researchers measured Kij for about 185 different junctions and found that the EN 12354 standard prediction formulas did not meet all of their requirements.

The new formula developed is based on the characteristic moment-impedances of the junction walls.

Initially, Actran was used by BBRI researchers to simulate a typical test set-up and it was found that the software’s predictions correlated well with the physical measurements.

Researchers used the software for a parametric study of a T-Junction, X-junction and H-junction after proving the accuracy of Actran’s results.