Control of Noise Pollution
Noise generation is associated with most of our daily activities. A healthy human ear responds to a very wide range of SPL from - the threshold of hearing at zero dB, uncomfortable at 100-120 dB and painful at 130-140 dB(3). Due to the various adverse impacts of noise on humans and environment (See LO-5), noise should be controlled. The technique or the combination of techniques to be employed for noise control depend upon the extent of the noise reduction required, nature of the equipment used and the economy aspects of the available techniques.
The various steps involved in the noise management strategy is illustrated at Fig 4. Reduction in the noise exposure time or isolation of species from the sources form part of the noise control techniques besides providing personal ear protection, engineered control for noise reduction at source and/or diversion in the trajectory of sound waves.
Noise Control at Source
The noise pollution can be controlled at the source of generation itself by employing techniques like
Reducing the noise levels from domestic sectors: The domestic noise coming from radio, tape recorders, television sets, mixers, washing machines, cooking operations can be minimised by their selective and judicious operation. By usage of carpets or any absorbing material, the noise generated from felling of items in house can be minimised.
Maintenance of automobiles: Regular servicing and tuning of vehicles will reduce the noise levels. Fixing of silencers to automobiles, two wheelers etc., will reduce the noise levels.
Control over vibrations: The vibrations of materials may be controlled using proper foundations, rubber padding etc. to reduce the noise levels caused by vibrations.
Low voice speaking: Speaking at low voices enough for communication reduces the excess noise levels.
Prohibition on usage of loud speakers: By not permitting the usage of loudspeakers in the habitant zones except for important meetings / functions. Now-a-days, the urban Administration of the metro cities in India, is becoming stringent on usage of loudspeakers.
Selection of machinery: Optimum selection of machinery tools or equipment reduces excess noise levels. For example selection of chairs, or selection of certain machinery/equipment which generate less noise (Sound) due to its superior technology etc. is also an important factor in noise minimisation strategy.
Maintenance of machines: Proper lubrication and maintenance of machines, vehicles etc. will reduce noise levels. For example, it is a common experience that, many parts of a vehicle will become loose while on a rugged path of journey. If these loose parts are not properly fitted, they will generate noise and cause annoyance to the driver/passenger.
Similarly is the case of machines. Proper handling and regular maintenance is essential not only for noise control but also to improve the life of machine.
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