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Wind Turbine Noise and Natural Sounds: Masking, Propagation and Modeling
KTH, School of Engineering Sciences (SCI), Aeronautical and Vehicle Engineering, Marcus Wallenberg Laboratory MWL. (Marcus Wallenberg Laboratory / Linné FLOW Centre)
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Wind turbines are an environmentally friendly and sustainable power source. Unfortunately, the noise impact can cause deteriorated living conditions for nearby residents. The audibility of wind turbine sound is influenced by ambient sound. This thesis deals with some aspects of noise from wind turbines. Ambient sounds influence the audibility of wind turbine noise. Models for assessing two commonly occurring natural ambient sounds namely vegetation sound and sound from breaking waves are presented in paper A and B. A sound propagation algorithm has been compared to long range measurementsof sound propagation in paper C. Psycho-acoustic tests evaluating the threshold and partial loudness of wind turbine noise when mixed with natural ambient sounds have been performed. These are accounted for in paper D.

The main scientific contributions are the following.Paper A: A semi-empiric prediction model for vegetation sound is proposed. This model uses up-to-date simulations of wind profiles and turbulent wind fields to estimate sound from vegetation. The fluctuations due to turbulence are satisfactory estimated by the model. Predictions of vegetation sound also show good agreement to measured spectra.

Paper B: A set of measurements of air-borne sound from breaking waves are reported. From these measurements a prediction method of sound from breaking waves is proposed. Third octave spectra from breaking waves are shown to depend on breaker type. Satisfactory agreement between predictions and measurements has been achieved.

Paper C: Long range sound propagation over a sea surface was investigated. Measurements of sound transmission were coordinated with local meteorological measurements. A sound propagation algorithm has been compared to the measured sound transmission. Satisfactory agreement between measurements and predictions were achieved when turbulence were taken into consideration in the computations.

Paper D: The paper investigates the interaction between wind turbine noise and natural ambient noise. Two loudness models overestimate the masking from two psychoacoustic tests. The wind turbine noise is completely concealed when the ambient sound level (A-weighed) is around 10 dB higher than the wind turbine noise level. Wind turbine noise and ambient noise were presented simultaneously at the same A-weighed sound level. The subjects then perceived the loudness of the wind turbine noise as 5 dB lower than if heard alone.

Keywords: Wind turbine noise, masking, ambient noise, long range sound propagation

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH , 2009. , 35 p.
Series
Trita-AVE, ISSN 1651-7660 ; 19
Keyword [en]
Wind turbine noise, models of natural sound sources, masking
National Category
Fluid Mechanics and Acoustics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-10434OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-10434DiVA: diva2:217217
Public defence
2009-05-26, F3, Lindstedtvägen 26, KTH, Stockholm, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20100705Available from: 2009-05-14 Created: 2009-05-13 Last updated: 2010-07-20Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Prediction Method for Wind-Induced Vegetation Noise
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Prediction Method for Wind-Induced Vegetation Noise
2009 (English)In: Acta Acoustica united with Acustica, ISSN 1610-1928, Vol. 95, no 4, 607-619 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article examines the sound generated when the wind interacts with vegetation. A wind field model has been coupled to a new method for predicting sound from vegetation. This includes predictions from coniferous, deciduous and leafless trees. The proposed prediction method and an earlier model have been compared with measurements which show improved agreement, in particular in the region below 1 kHz. Comparisons between five measurement sites and predictions show satisfactory agreement for wind speeds up to 8.5 m/s. Fluctuations in the vegetation noise level due to wind turbulence can also be accurately estimated.

Keyword
ATMOSPHERIC SURFACE-LAYER, PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS, FOREST EDGE, PART I, FLOW, SIMULATION, FIELD, MODEL, TURBULENCE, INCREMENT
National Category
Vehicle Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13970 (URN)10.3813/AAA.918189 (DOI)000268380900003 ()2-s2.0-68849100729 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100705Available from: 2010-07-06 Created: 2010-07-06 Last updated: 2010-07-20Bibliographically approved
2. Air-borne sound generated by sea waves
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Air-borne sound generated by sea waves
2010 (English)In: Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, ISSN 0001-4966, E-ISSN 1520-8524, Vol. 127, no 5, 2771-2779 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper describes a semi-empiric model and measurements of air-borne sound generated by breaking sea waves. Measurements have been performed at the Baltic Sea. Shores with different slopes and sediment types have been investigated. Results showed that the sound pressure level increased from 60 dB at 0.4 m wave height to 78 dB at 2.0 m wave height. The 1/3 octave spectrum was dependent on the surf type. A scaling model based on the dissipated wave power and a surf similarity parameter is proposed and compared to measurements. The predictions show satisfactory agreement to the measurements. (C) 2010 Acoustical Society of America. [DOI: 10.1121/1.3327815]

Keyword
LABORATORY BREAKING WAVES, UNDERWATER SOUND, AMBIENT NOISE, SURF ZONE, BUBBLES, WATER, ENTRAINMENT, RADIATION, OCEAN
National Category
Vehicle Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13966 (URN)10.1121/1.3327815 (DOI)000277617300016 ()2-s2.0-77956243283 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100705Available from: 2010-07-05 Created: 2010-07-05 Last updated: 2011-01-10Bibliographically approved
3. Long range sound propagation over a sea surface
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Long range sound propagation over a sea surface
2009 (English)In: Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, ISSN 0001-4966, E-ISSN 1520-8524, Vol. 126, no 5, 2191-2197 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper describes methodology and results from a model-based analysis of data on sound transmission from controlled sound sources at sea to a 10-km distant shore. The data consist of registrations of sound transmission loss together with concurrently collected atmospheric data at the source and receiver locations. The purpose of the analysis is to assess the accuracy of methods for transmission loss prediction in which detailed data on the local geography and atmospheric conditions are used for computation of the sound field. The results indicate that such sound propagation predictions are accurate and reproduce observed variations in the sound level as function of time in a realistic way. The results further illustrate that the atmospheric model must include a description of turbulence effects to ensure predicted noise levels to remain realistically high during periods of sound shadow. (C) 2009 Acoustical Society of America. [DOI: 10.1121/1.3238236]

Keyword
ATMOSPHERIC-TURBULENCE
National Category
Vehicle Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13967 (URN)10.1121/1.3238236 (DOI)000271507000017 ()2-s2.0-70449346064 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100705Available from: 2010-07-05 Created: 2010-07-05 Last updated: 2010-07-20Bibliographically approved
4. The Potential of Natural Sounds to Mask Wind Turbine Noise
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Potential of Natural Sounds to Mask Wind Turbine Noise
2010 (English)In: Acta Acoustica united with Acustica, ISSN 1610-1928, Vol. 96, no 1, 131-137 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Wind turbine (WT) noise may cause annoyance, especially in relatively quiet areas with low ambient levels. As a compliment to conventional noise control at the source, addition of wanted sounds may reduce the loudness of WT noise by auditory masking. In order to test this, two masking experiments were conducted with two WT noises as target sounds and three natural sounds as maskers (wind in coniferous or deciduous trees and sea waves). In the first experiment, 30 listeners determined the detection thresholds of WT noise in the presence of the natural sounds using a threshold tracking method. In the second experiment, the same group of listeners matched the loudness of partially masked WT noise with the loudness of unmasked WT noise. The results showed that detection thresholds for WT-noise in the presence of natural sounds from trees and sea waves were around -8 to -12 dB S/N-ratio. Furthermore, a reduction of perceived loudness of WT-noise was found for S/N-ratios up to 2 dB. These results were compared with predictions from two models of partial masking (steady and time variant). In general, empirically determined detection thresholds and partial loudness matches were higher than predictions from the two models.

Keyword
PARTIAL LOUDNESS, MODEL, PSYCHOACOUSTICS, PREDICTION
National Category
Vehicle Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13964 (URN)10.3813/AAA.918264 (DOI)000275411900015 ()2-s2.0-77949409044 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100705Available from: 2010-07-05 Created: 2010-07-05 Last updated: 2010-07-20Bibliographically approved

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