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Six semesters of building acoustics in three days


People who are pursuing a professional career do not often find the time to acquire the basics of a specialist area to which their career path may have led them. Many engineers thus discover at some point that they have to deal with acoustics without ever having studied this area properly. The Academic Programmes of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Akustik (German Acoustical Society) fill these gaps. These Academic Programmes - in short but intensive courses on specialist areas of acoustics - aim at instructing people who do not have enough time in their everyday working lives.
One such programme took place at the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) in Braunschweig in June, focussing on "Building Acoustics".

In just three days, the participants became familiar with subjects like the physical aspects of sound, psychoacoustic effects, sound reduction of building elements, the correct way of predicting sound insulation in buildings, building acoustic metrology, the legal view point of sound insulation as well as the basics of structure-borne sound – a subject that people like to forget about, as "common sense" is usually not quite right here. The course was rounded off with comparative considerations of numerical methods of solving sound problems (SEA, Finite Element, BEM etc.), the testing of commercial prognosis programs and practical experiments, where the students were initiated in a ½-hourly rhythm into everyday methods on the one hand and into the most modern methods of building acoustic metrology on the other. Those who still had not had enough were able to go on a tour of the building acoustic labs of the PTB at the end of the third day or take an oral exam. As the students of the Academic Programme naturally did not know Braunschweig's assets, these gaps in their knowledge were filled with a boat trip on the River Oker one evening, followed by a meal of asparagus over Braunschweig's roofs.
The evaluation of the Building Acoustics Academic Programme by the participants turned out to be positive, the competence and the dedication of the lecturers were even rated at one hundred percent. Prof. Sabine Langer (TU Braunschweig and Forum Braunschweiger Akustiker), Prof. Alfred Schmitz (TAC-Akustik) and Prof. Werner Scholl (PTB) were responsible for the event. Dieter Krause (MPA Braunschweig), Heiner Metzen (DataKustik GmbH ) and Dr. Volker Wittstock (PTB) were the other lecturers. With 25 students, the Building Acoustics Academic Programme recorded the highest number of course participants to date, so that organising the event a further time is being considered.

Group photo of the students and lecturers

Figure 1: Group photo of the students and lecturers

Lecturers: from the left: D. Krause, W. Scholl, S. Langer, A. Schmitz, V. Wittstock

Figure 2: Lecturers: from the left: D. Krause, W. Scholl, S. Langer, A. Schmitz, V. Wittstock

Contact person:

Werner Scholl, FB 1.7, Werner.Scholl@ptb.de