Less noise from above: Samsung C&T combats inter-floor sound transmission

Living in an apartment building can offer many conveniences, but living with neighbors above and below means that one is also conscious of inter-floor noise. With people spending more time living and working at home since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, conflicts between neighbors on different levels of an apartment building because of inter-floor noise are occurring more frequently.

Samsung C&T Engineering & Construction Group recognizes that homes are the most comfortable and precious space to us all, so it is striving to alleviate social tensions by analyzing the causes and the reality of inter-floor noise and developing technologies to respond to the problem.

Developing proprietary technology to dull inter-floor noise

Samsung C&T’s Inter-floor Noise Research Institute, founded in December 2020 specifically to deal with the problem, has been carrying out research and development to accelerate the resolution of inter-floor noise complaints. The cutting-edge technology developed by the institute to restrict the sound of heavy weight impacts has now been certified by a nationally authorized testing agency in Korea.

In order to obtain the first-grade performance rating in heavy weight impact sound blocking, the noise transmitted to the lower floor must be no more than 40 decibels, roughly the level of sounds heard in a quiet library. This means that it should be difficult for a resident on the floor below to recognize the sound of a heavy object landing on the floor above.

Samsung C&T conducted a test and verification of this technology at the construction sites of its Raemian apartments. In addition, four heavy weight impact sound blocking technologies developed by Samsung C&T have been officially certified by the Korea Conformity Laboratories (KCL), a nationally recognized testing agency in Korea, as having first-class performance in blocking such heavy weight impact sounds from traveling between floors.

The new sound-dulling technology developed by Samsung C&T is more meaningful in that its measurements were taken through a demonstration at an actual Raemian apartment construction site, not in a laboratory.

A heavy weight impact sound experiment is in progress using an instrument named ‘bang machine.

Unstinting efforts to block noise between floors

Samsung C&T E&C Group plans to actively apply the technologies on-site that have recently been certified. This involves acquiring the rating of accredited institution designated by the Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. Through this process, the Group also plans to prepare for the government’s post-confirmation system for inter-floor noise, a certification system that is a revision of the existing pre-certification system, which evaluates inter-floor noise blocking performance in the laboratory before construction. The purpose of the post-confirmation system is to evaluate inter-floor noise blocking performance after construction.

The new inter-floor noise post-confirmation system will take effect in August this year, so Samsung C&T will apply newly developed technologies as early as the second half of this year.

Meanwhile, Samsung C&T E&C Group is set to open the nation’s largest research laboratory specializing in inter-floor noise in April this year. In the future, the Group plans to introduce inter-floor noise reduction technology that breaks the existing paradigm by conducting research in various fields ranging from structural forms and materials to construction methods. In addition, Samsung C&T plans to open this research laboratory to external research institutes to engage in industry-academic cooperation to solve inter-floor noise problems.

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