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Silent road for urban and extra-urban use


Objectives and content:

All the countries of the European Union consider noise as the most widespread form of environmental pollution, mainly in consequence of road traffic. It has been estimated that 80 million inhabitants in Western Europe endure traffic noise that scientists and health experts consider to be unacceptable. The most promising solution for the urban or extra-urban areas is the development of road pavement types able to control rolling noise as well as noise generated by exhaust systems, fans and engines. These types of noise are the major sources for trucks at medium and low speed and for cars at stop-and-go driving conditions, and they are more located in the low frequency range. According to the important industrial and social needs, the main objective of this project is to develop effective noise-controlling road pavements at a reasonable cost, by working on sound absorbing properties, on micro and macro texture characteristics and on hydraulic properties.

The noise reduction will be possible by broadening the absorption spectra in the medium and low frequency ranges and the expected gains are:
- A reduction of noise emission levels in urban or extra-urban areas of at least 3 dB(A), in comparison with a traditional porous asphalt type surface;
- A reduction of urban noise emission levels of at least S dB(A), in comparison with a traditional dense bitumen road surface. According to this ambitious but realistic objective, the most important innovations within the project will be to develop an improved comprehension of the mechanisms which generate overall road traffic noise, an improved comprehension of material properties, a systematic optimisation of open textured road coverings with respect to efficiency, durability, and costs and solutions for the main problems of actual open textured road coverings.

The main results which will be achieved during this project are:
- The improvement and validation of numerical models able to predict the road noise;
- The definition of new solutions of pavement for reducing road noise, with an enlargement of the range of acoustical efficiency towards lower frequencies;
- The production of laboratory samples, which will be tested and characterised from an acoustical, mechanical and structural point of view (laboratory measurements).- The realisation on test tracks of short sections of different solutions of pavement, and of two sites at full scale, which will be tested and characterised from an acoustical, mechanical, structural and hydraulic point of view. The consortium, composed of three different categories of partners (companies specialised in road construction, maintenance and management, research centres specialised in acoustic modelling, in acoustic measurements and in the monitoring of pavements performances, and a company specialised in production of special raw materials) is involved in many technical and standard committees and will look for a wide dissemination of the results of theresearch. BE97-4690

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


Autostrade Concessioni e ConstruzioniAutostrade S.p.A.
6,Via Milano
00065 Fiano Romano

Participants (9)

Argex B.V.B.A
2070 Zwijndrecht
10,Fokkersdreef 21
1933 Sterrebeek
Institut National de Recherche sur leTransport et la Sécurité
25,Avenue Francois Mitterand
69675 Bron
Ipse Srl
Via Bologna 87
10154 Torino
Laboratoire Régional des Pont et Chaussées - Ministère de l'Equipement
12,Rue Teisserenc De Bort
78190 Trappes
Laboratório Nacional de Engenharia Civil
101,Avenida Do Brasil
1799 Lisboa
Pavimental SpA
15,Piazza F. De Lucia
00139 Rome
SACER Paris Nord-Est
Zone Industrielle Des Montatons
91240 Saint Michel Sur Orge
Société Anonyme pour la Construction et l'Entretien des Routes

91150 Morigny Champigny