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Acoustics in the workplace – What’s the “new normal”?

As people are gradually allowed to return to a place of work, new COVID-secure offices have changed the acoustic environment. The installation of screens, the partitioning of open plan spaces, wearing of face coverings, and a lower level of occupancy have created acoustic challenges. For example, speech intelligibility is affected by the reverberation time of a space. Fewer people and more reflective materials, such as plastic screens, will decrease the sound absorption and increase the reverberation time, resulting in poorer speech intelligibility.

In this article from Rebecca Hogg ,Acoustic Consultant, BSRIA she is explaining that Workplaces have changed, some almost unrecognizable from before, and there is a myriad of requirements to consider beyond the essential health and safety measure.

In these environments the noise levels are also often higher and communication between people can therefore be harder. People working further away from each other and wearing face coverings will inhibit successful communication and influence performance, and if someone must shout to be heard does this have the potential to spread virus droplets further?

Separator panels from CultureIn , Circular Impact partner, create office dividers made of Varian sheets offering elegant space separation without blocking the light.

They are using corrugated Varian sheets mounted on aluminium tubular support.

This solution has several advantages :

- Self-supporting material, only 2 materials used

- Airy and bright rendering

- Lightweight and easy to move

- Mechanical assembly allowing optimum recycling or re use of the Varian at end of life


The Installation of acoustic tiles in glazed co working rooms.

is an easy an efficient method to enhance absorption,

Varian thermoformed shells mounted on MDF structure filled with PET

acoustic foam carry several benefits :

- No frame, each shape is thermoformed with an acoustic foam inside

- Easy installation, the baffles are simply attached to the wall like "picture frames"

with velchro, magnet or mechanical fastening

- Easy to play with the tiles Modularity/layout



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