[GSBN] SB & Acoustics
derek at unm.edu
Fri Nov 12 13:12:02 CST 2010
The acoustical advantages of strawbale walls, relative to other
effective sound barrier wall materials, are largely irrelevant in a
landscape or highway sound barrier wall. Any non-perforated wall with
reasonable mass and density will work similarly. Acoustic barrier
walls are valuable, but they can't stop sound coming over the wall.
The sound coming over the acoustic barrier will be the largest
component of noise, so optimizing the wall materials has rapidly
diminishing returns. Making the wall taller matters much more than
improving its sound transference characteristics by a few percent (from
"very good" to "excellent"). But there are other factors that limit
As Sarah and others mention, the long-term durability of a strawbale
landscape wall is a question affected by climate, prevailing winds,
design, and construction details. Putting a roof on the top of the
wall increases its beauty and longevity, but also the cost. It's
probably safer for drivers to crash into a strawbale wall, compared to
concrete. Outside of that, I would tend to vote for another material.
Strawbale doesn't offer obvious advantages, and having a few sections
of wall fail, even if for reasons related to poor detailing, will
decrease the reputation of strawbale.
Language Learning Center
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University of New Mexico
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Internet: derek at unm.edu
--On Friday, November 12, 2010 3:42 PM +1300 Sarah Johnston
<sarahjohnston at ihug.co.nz> wrote:
> We've had an inquiry from a local road works company about using
> straw bale as a landscape wall for acoustical reasons along the main
> highway (keep in mind, in this neck of the woods...the main
> north-south road is two lanes only...).
> They have requested acoustical research and data. We have the
> information in Bruce's book, but I thought I would check to see if
> there has been any new testing or research done recently that you
> could share with us?
> Does anyone have experience with landscape walls along busy highways?
> I'm questioning the overall long-term durability of this type of
> landscape wall. Your thoughts and input are all welcome.
> Many thanks!
> Sarah Johnston
> Sol Design, Ltd.
> 50A Connolly Street
> Geraldine New Zealand
> 03 693 7369
> sarahjohnston at ihug.co.nz
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