Noise Control design for a Ventilation Fan – Case Study



A ventilation system was design and installed for a multi story garage.  The ventilation system system had a vertical concrete shaft with the ventilation fan located on the top floor at street level.  The ventilation fan is separated from the outside by a set of metal louvers.  Adjacent to the louvers is an open pedestrian area.  The exhaust fan as installed had an inline duct silencer but this was insufficient in terms of providing the desired noise mitigation.  The project desire was not to make changes to the fan or its inline silencer or the external louvers so an alternative noise mitigation option had to be explored.  Based on the provided sound power characteristics of the fan, the exterior noise levels as calculated matched the expected levels coming out of the metal louvers.  The interior of the ventilation shaft is bare concrete with the fan installed though a hole in the concrete top floor.  The predominate noise was the very high reverberation inside the ventilation shaft. The owner of the property made an attempt at installing noise absorption but this was not sufficient.  Based on the field data the sound levels with the preliminary absorption solution matched expectation, but further noise reduction was required.  A complete sound absorption on the walls of the concrete ventilation shaft noise mitigation solution was design, and the expected levels predicted to show that significant noise reductions can be obtained by a comprehensive noise absorption solution.  The noise mitigation solution was implemented and exterior sound level measurements performed  at the completion of the project.  The measured sound levels outside of the metal louvers were in very good agreement with the predicted levels.  Based on the success of this first noise mitigation solution, noise mitigation for a second ventilation system is not being considered.