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An open-source software tool for the detailed reproduction of the urban sound environment

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Open-source software for sound propagation

An EU team investigated ways of controlling sound propagation in metropolises. Work produced an open-source modelling tool based on pseudo-spectral time-domain (PSTD) modelling techniques.

Digital Economy

Cities are becoming noisier, creating health and well-being consequences. Urban sound propagation is the engineering field concerned with noise mitigation, yet its study suffers from lack of adequate software tools. The EU-funded OPENPSTD (An open-source software tool for the detailed reproduction of the urban sound environment) project created a suitable open-source tool. The software is intended to facilitate research into sound propagation. The consortium developed the package to investigate reduction of urban noise and to support a positive sound environment. Researchers modelled source directivity using PSTD. The group also created a hybrid PSTD/DG method, a numerical modelling approach able to handle curved shapes and surfaces with arbitrary properties. The group completed the open-source application, able to solve a geometrical domain using the PSTD technique. The code utilises the graphics processor units. A 2D version of the package, and manual, were released via the project website. Team members demonstrated the OPENPSTD method to other researchers via a series of workshops and lectures. The work yielded 34 publications. Project findings will further be applied to urban noise reduction via careful use of vegetation and other landscape features, and also in indoor spaces as sports venues. Hence, cities of the future may suffer from less noise pollution.

Keywords

Sound propagation, urban sound, OPENPSTD, open-source software, noise reduction

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