SPIRIT ACOUSTICS PROJECT REPORT
Mark Yanchuck, AlA
One Johnson &
New Brunswick, NJ
430 Route 22
Bridgewater, New Jersey
Speech Privacy Report
Office Isolation Measurements
Before and After
A – Fixture Acoustic Inhibited Transmission Hood
B – Flexible Acoustic Tile Enhancer
C – (Limited Areas) Acoustical Wall Treatment
Spirit Acoustics Inc.
114 Mountain Ave.
Berkeley Heights NJ 07922
18 January 2005
Mr. MarkYanchuk,AIA Architect
One Johnson & Johnson Plaza
New Brunswick, NJ 08933
Re: Office Isolation Measurements at Ortho Biotech Route 22 Facility
This letter will summarize our findings regarding airborne sound isolation at the Ortho Biotech
facility in Bridgewater, New Jersey.
Spirit Acoustics has been installing systems to improve the office-to-office isolation in the facil
ity. The drop tile acoustical ceiling had been identified as the flanking path providing for poor
speech isolation. Spirit Acoustics is installing a backing on the top of the ceiling tiles to provide
increased transmission loss. In addition, acoustic fixture hoods are being installed above the light
fixtures to reduce this flanking path. Finally, in some spaces wall treatment in the form of fabric
covered glass fiberboard is being applied. Our measurements indicate that these various mea
sures have provided a significant improvement in the isolation between spaces.
Airborne sound describes sounds that travels from office to office in either direction and includes
conversational speech and noise from equipment such as computers. The transmission path is
not structure borne (vibration) although by necessity, part of the path is via the structure.
Airborne Isolation is described in terms of the STC (Sound Transmission Class), or NIC (Noise
Isolation Class). The measurement of these parameters is made by
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producing broadband noise in one room and measuring the one-third octave spectrum in the
source and receiving rooms. The difference in the measured sound levels is then adjusted for the
receiving room acoustical characteristics for STC measurements (unadjusted for NIC mea
surements) and curve fitted to provide a one number rating of isolation performance. The basic
differences between the two measures is that the STC value is a rating of the demising structure
performance (wall between offices), while the NIC value describes the obtained isolation in the
specific installation. NIC is therefore the best metric to assess the speech isolation provided by
the entire construction, walls, ceiling, interior materials, etc.
2. Data Acquisition and Results
We visited the facility on the evening of 14 December 2004 to carry out isolation measure
ments. The measurements were made using a Bruel & Kjaer Type 2250 Precision Sound Level
Meter/Real Time Analyzer. A powered loudspeaker with signal from a pink noise generator was
placed in one office, and the system was adjusted to provide a sound pressure level of 95 to 100
decibels. Measurements were made at eight locations in the office in which the loud speaker was
placed (source room). The source was left running and the measurements were repeated in the
receiving office at similar locations. Measurements of background noise in the receiving space
were made with the sound source off to ensure that the receiving sound levels were the result of
the sound source and not other unrelated noise sources. Measurements were made in a total of 5
office pairs described in Table 1 on page 3.
The measurement results are provided in Figure 1 and summarized in Table 1. The NIC values
are calculated by curve fitting the third octave data to a standardized curve using an ASTM
specified procedure. It is clear from the measurements that the treatment is effective in increas
ing the noise reduction (average sound pressure level in source room -average sound pressure
level in receiving room) and therefore increasing privacy between the spaces. The NIC values
for the treated rooms were 15 points higher than the untreated rooms. Further, the light hoods are
an integral part of the system, with half the increase in noise reduction resulting from the addi
tion of this component of the system. Where the fixture hoods were not yet installed (3359 and
3358), the noise reduction was noticeably
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lower than the fully treated rooms. The wall treatment also increases (mainly high frequency) noise
reduction and provides some increase in performance.
Table I-Summary of Isolation Measurements at Ortho Biotech Bridgewater NJ Facility. Data of 14 De
|3402 and 3404||Enhancer Backing on Tiles, Hood over lights||42|
|3101 and 3103||Untreated||27|
|2234 and 2235||Enhancer Backing on Tiles, Hoods over
lights,interior wall treatment
|2104 and 2105||Untreated||26|
|3359 and 3358||Enhancer Backing on Tiles||36|
It is clear from the measurements that the noise isolation between private offices is clearly insufficient
(less than NIC 30) under baseline conditions. With the treatment installed, the NIC values above 40 fall
more in line with typical recommendations.
We hope that this is sufficient for your current requirements. Should you have any questions, please call.
Very truly yours,
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Figure1-0ne-third Octave Office to Office Noise Reduction values for
measurements made at Ortho Biotech Facility. Data of 14 December 2004.