Today, one of the biggest factors that affect our lives negatively is to be exposed to loud sound. Soundproof acoustic environments, which become a necessity in today’s world, offer you a peaceful and better quality of life.
In areas where sound and noise insulation should be used (rooms, concert halls, recording studios, etc.), the sounds are perceived as the sounds coming from the sound source directly (music set, television, orchestra) and the reflections of those sounds from the walls and existing objects. Reflected sounds travel in the air for much more time than sounds coming from the source. Therefore, we hear them later than the main source and it creates a distortion. For this reason, they prevent sound to be understood and perceived as it is.
The basic quality of acoustic carpets is that they eliminate the sound pollution and bring the sound levels to the natural detection level without harming the environment. Acoustic carpets, which minimize sound transmission between floors, are generally preferred in environments where the sound is echoing, such as open space offices and call centers.
What Is an Acoustic Carpet?
Acoustic carpets are insulation materials used in the floor coverings which insulate the vibrating sounds as well as prevent slipping. Acoustic carpets, which can be used easily on the reinforced floor as well as elevated flooring, are preferred due to the advantages such as high yarn and base quality, removable parts and desired patterns with different color options. Acoustic carpets can be PVC based, curly, velour or felt.
Acoustic carpets, which are among the commercial flooring materials, are the ideal solution for the commercial spaces where aesthetics are emphasized and the acoustic performance and the static energy resistance should be high. The use of sensitive electronic equipment in commercial places causes static electricity to be emitted on the floor covering. If static electricity exceeds a certain value, it will harm the human body and human health. Acoustic carpets with a static control system produced by a special technology protect both individuals and office equipment.
Acoustic carpets prevent slippage on the floor where it is used and provide sound insulation with their strong sound absorption properties. They are very durable and provides high performance. They are stainless, fixed size, unbreakable and does not shrink. Prevents vibrations on the floor as well as the noise occurring due to vibration. They can be used in many areas such as offices, homes, schools, workplaces, and hospitals. They do not absorb water, do not smell and are resistant to industrial cleaning materials.
What Are Acoustic Carpets Made Of?
Acoustic carpets can be made of natural materials like natural fibers and felt, as well as synthetic materials like rubber, Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), and Polyurethane.
Natural Homogenous Fibers
Any kind of material that has been formed as fiber in nature and can be used in textile is classified as natural fibers. Natural fibers are divided into three classes as plant-based, animal-based and inorganic natural fibers.
Plant-based fibers: They contain 60-90% cellulose in their structure and they are also called cellulosic fibers. These fibers obtained from plants are also classified according to their location on the plant.
- Fibers obtained from plant seeds: These fibers are found on the plant seed. In these, a single fibril consists of a single cell. In this respect, they are called as single-cell fibers as well. Example: Cotton and kapok.
- Fibers obtained from plant bodies: This class is also called as bast fiber. A single fiber consists of a bunch of several plant cells. Therefore it is also called ’multicellular fiber. Example: flax, hemp, jute, and ramie.
- Fibers obtained from plant leaves: Obtained from broad-leaved tropical plants. Example: Sisal, Manila hemp and New Zealand linen.
- Fibers obtained from fruits: Coconut fiber is obtained from coconut fruit.
Animal-based fibers: They are called protein fibers because they have protein structures. They are divided into two subclasses:
- Hair origin (leather product) fibers: The use of hair of animal species of this class is very old. Example: Wool from sheep, mohair from goat, cashmere, angora, alpaca, camel hair etc.
- Secretory fibers: The natural silk of the silkworm is obtained from the secretion of the animal.
Natural Inorganic Fibers: In nature, there are also materials with an inorganic structure and a fiber-like crystal structure in addition to organic fibers of plant and animal origin. Asbestos is an example of this class.
Felt is a kind of fabric obtained from sheep wool. It keeps you cool in the summer, warm in winter! Thanks to its insulating properties, it is a highly preferred material in insulation systems.
The main material of the felt is wool. Usually, sheep wool is used, but camel hair and alpaca wool may also be used. There are many kinds of sheep wool. Quality varies according to the region and the herbs they eat. Because wool is a natural material, it is very useful. Regulates the humidity in the room when used at home. When it is very moist, it absorbs moisture and adds moisture to the environment with very dry air.
Unlike other fabrics, the felt is achieved by the fusion of wool fibers and touching together, not by the bonding of the leathery bands and pieces. Because the felt is actually wool and has an important place among the fabrics. It protects the heat and it is waterproof. The felt was first recognized by the Chinese as ”a tribal or wild matter“ because it was used for many things in the ancient tribes of Central Asia, from clothing to covering.
Rubber is a durable, flexible material obtained from rubberwood, which has a great place in today’s industry. Rubber is used in our daily life, such as shoes, raincoats, buttons, combs, and belts. It is also widely used in car tires. The rubber tree takes its name from the “kauçi”, which means weeping tree in the language of the Indians. Locals who see a white, sticky and milk-like liquid flowing through the tree dry it over time and start to make toy balls. After many years, rubber is also started to be used in Europe.
Having a high elasticity is one of the most important properties of rubber. The rubber softens when heated and melts at 220°C. Then, with the distillation process, rubber oil is obtained and this oil is used as the solvent of the rubber. Rubber is also known as pure gum, which is due to the fact that the rubber obtained from the rubber tree is 90% pure. At the same time, the rubber is not a conductor for electric current and is therefore widely used for insulation purposes.
The sap of the rubber tree is called latex. To collect the latex, V-shaped slits open with iron blades in the tree trunk. If the collected latex is left to its own, rubber grains coagulate. Rubber can be produced by coagulating the latex. For this, acids such as acetic acid and formic acid are used. About 35% of the latex obtained is rubber.
In order to become a tire material, it is necessary to be mixed with chemicals such as sulfur. Rubbers with 12-20% sulfur ratio are called tires. If the sulfur content is high, a product which is called ebonite and used as an electrical insulator is obtained. In order to harden the rubber, the method of introducing chemicals such as sulfur into it is called vulcanization and this process provides strengthening of chemical bonds at high temperatures.
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
Polyvinyl chloride, (usually abbreviated to PVC) is a widely used plastic. It is one of the most valuable products in the chemical industry. More than 50% of PVC in the world is used in the construction sector. As a building material, PVC is cheap and easy to install. In recent years, PVC has replaced traditional wood, concrete and polymer clay (Fimo pulp). Although it is an ideal building material, there are concerns about PVC for the environment and human health.
Among the application areas of PVC; door and window profiles, vinyl façade coverings, pipe and installation materials, electrical cables, flooring, hobby materials. Due to the fact that it is flexible and cheap, the material is widely used for pipelines in the water and wastewater industry. It has been used in the health sector for the last 50 years. It is also a preferred material for insulation systems due to its insulating properties.
PVC consists of two main substances. Chlorine (salt) and Ethylene (from crude oil). This compound, ethylene dichloride, is converted to Vinyl Chloride Monomer (VCM) gas at very high temperatures. By chemical reaction called polymerization, the VCM is chemically converted into a stable powder. This is called PVC.
Polyvinyl chloride is produced by the polymerization of vinyl chloride in monomer form. PVC is a rigid plastic, plasticizers are added to make it softer and more flexible.
Polyurethane is a polymer composed of a chain of organic units combined with carbamate bonds. Flexible and non-stretching foams are used in the production of durable elastomers and high-performance adhesives, synthetic fibers, gaskets, condoms, the bottom of carpets and rigid plastics. Polyurethane products are often called urethanes. However, it should not be confused with the specific urethane substance, also known as ethyl carbamate. Polyurethanes are not made of or include ethyl carbamate.
Polyurethane or urethane is a chemical derived from the chemical reaction of isocyanate and alcohol. Although this reaction was known in the 19th century, it was discontinued until 1937 when Otto Bayer obtain a good quality plastic with the help of polyisocyanate and polyol agents. Polyurethane technology was later moved to the US in 1957 by two immigrant chemists, Jean-Pierre Abbat and Dr. Fritz Hartmann.
Polyurethane has been produced with different additives and monomers for different purposes. Nowadays, waterproofing products, condoms, car steering wheels, shoe soles, adhesives, floor coverings, foams, elastomers, and many other products are produced from polyurethane.
Vibration-Absorbing Acoustic Carpets
Ground sound insulation is applied on the ground in order to prevent the sound which may come out by walking on the hard ground or falling down of any material. You can use vibration-absorbing acoustic carpets in order to prevent vibrating sounds on the floor. This is a material that is not affected by moisture and does not contain mildew.
Vibration-absorbing acoustic carpets have a distinct place in terms of providing sound insulation in working environments and increasing working efficiency. The coating of these carpets has acoustic sound regulation, sound insulation, and static energy resistance as well as fire standards and IS0 9002,14001 certificates.
Vibration-absorbing acoustic carpets can be used in most areas, as they are used to prevent sound from transferring to the lower floor and to ensure that vibrating sounds are not emitted in the space. They can be preferred for offices, call centers, cinema halls, home cinema saloons, dry cleaning stores, hospitals, meeting rooms, drum studios, music rooms, and stair steps.
Vibration absorbing acoustic carpets are very easy to use. All you have to do is to stick the carpet with your acoustic sponge adhesive on the floor.
Rubber Base Acoustic Carpets
Rubber base acoustic carpets are important for preventing vibration-induced noise. They are generally not preferred for impact-induced sound insulation. Acoustic carpets which are antibacterial are recommended for the interruption of the sound traveling between floors. They are produced from polyurethane raw material. In addition, they are resistant to burning.
Technical properties of rubber base acoustic carpets:
Waterproof, base material is PVC.
Washable with water.
Does not stain and can be easily cleaned.
Non-slip and antistatic.
Their application can be done without adhesive.
Produced from polyurethane material.
Moldless and antibacterial.
Usage areas of rubber base acoustic carpets:
Studio sound recording rooms
Purpose of Using Acoustic Carpets: Sound Insulation
Sound insulation is the type of insulation made to minimize the negative effects of the sound. Controlling the diffusion of sound in the environment is the most important goal in sound insulation. Noise can be defined as the whole of annoying sounds for humans. Protecting ourselves against noise and minimizing the harmful effects of it is generally referred to as sound insulation.
When sound is emitted in an environment, it behaves like other physical materials when there is an obstacle. In other words, a part of the sound is reflected back. The other part is absorbed by the obstacle in front of it. Some of them pass to the other side of the obstacle. Therefore, each material has a potential for sound absorption. When sound insulation is applied, substances with the highest sound absorption potential are preferred.
The basis of sound insulation is to minimize the reflected vibrations. The masses are placed in the single layer structural elements so that the sound does not pass to the neighboring side. However, this situation is not recommended as it increases weight and decreases durability. Instead, it is recommended to provide sound insulation by placing sound absorber materials between the two profile walls. It is also done with acoustic carpets in order to prevent sound transitions in floors. Prevention of impact noises is possible with double layer laying.
Some of the techniques used in sound insulation are as follows: Increasing the density of building elements, forming the structural elements of a building from the materials that absorb the sound or making reinforcements in the building elements with high sound absorption potential and making a double layer wall layer.
2 Types of Sound Insulation: Sound Transmission Loss and Acoustic Insulation
Industrial and environmental noise, and therefore acoustic insulation, have become very important nowadays. Acoustic insulation and acoustic damping systems are frequently used in the defense industry where acoustic privacy is important, as well as in sectors such as residential, automotive and white goods where acoustic comfort is predominant. Systems that measure acoustic characterization of materials are called impedance tubes (plane tube, Kundt tube, etc.). Acoustic properties of insulation materials and systems are “sound transmission loss” and “sound absorption coefficient”.
The loss of sound transmission is a property of a material that gives its sound insulation capacity in dB. In terms of sound insulation, it is desirable to have a large loss of sound transmission due to the small amount of sound transmission coefficient of a material. The loss of the sound transmission of a material varies depending on the frequency, material properties and especially the surface density.
Applications to prevent noise from passing from one place to another are called “sound transmission loss isolations”. Hard surface materials reflect less sound. In air-permeable and flexible materials such as mineral glass wool and rock wool, the sound wave penetrates into the body, reduces by a significant portion in the gap and converted to heat.
Acoustic sound insulation is the name given to the technology used to better hear necessary sounds and to eliminate noise and other disturbing sounds in the environment. Recently, these practices have enabled us to have more livable environments, which are frequently used in new construction and old living areas. If the sound frequencies exceed a certain level, the speaking sound cannot be heard in the environment. Therefore, sound insulation and acoustic regulation are required.
In places with crowded people, there is a constant buzzing even if the volume level is not high. This buzzing can be reduced by acoustic measures. In such insulations, non-flammable acoustic boards give the best results.
Other Materials Used for Sound Insulation
The purpose of acoustic foams is to reduce the resonance in the environment rather than sound insulation. It is aimed to absorb and distribute the sound evenly in the room. Contrary to the known, these products do not have much use in the areas that need sound isolation. Even the wrong practices can do more harm than good (such as loss of time and money). The quality standards of acoustic foams to be used in volume acoustics are the fact that they are flameproof, have a variety of thickness, density, and color, the width of the surface areas (the maximum of indentations and protrusions) are among the elements you should be looking at.
Wooden Acoustic Panels
Wooden acoustic panels are produced in two ways. These are acoustic boards and wooden boards with holes that we call wood wool. Wood wool panels are also classified according to their fiber structure. The thickness of the panels and the frequency of the fibers are determined according to the sound insulation and volume acoustics required. Noise Reduction Coefficient (NCR) values must be taken into account when selecting products. These values are found in the technical specifications of the products. For example, if you think of a room with reverberation, the amount of sound insulation materials to be used for this room is calculated separately for the perforated wood panel, for the wood wool panel, and for the acoustic foam.
Rubber Group Products (Vibration Isolators)
Rubber group products are especially used in vibration and impact-induced insulation. Acoustic rubbers are produced in various densities and thicknesses. Raw materials are generally used car tires. Rubber-cork mix products are also available. They are often used under screed and under parquet. In addition, floating floors in mechanical rooms can be used as sound insulation material. Rubber group products are unrivaled with their damping feature for impact-induced sounds in construction sites.
Special Sound Insulation Materials
Special acoustic insulation products make a difference between sound insulation materials according to the place of use and purpose. This type of products are mostly used in boutique projects to gain space and to achieve the highest possible efficiency in insulation. For example, the thickness of the common walls between the rooms side by side in a hotel construction can be up to 25-30 cm with the use of gas concrete or bricks, and often cannot provide the desired insulation.
Heavy Sound Barrier
Heavy sound barrier is a very dense product with Epdm based raw material. Despite the thickness of 3 mm, m2 weight can reach up to 7 kg. It is widely used in construction sector in Europe and America. In practice, the use of acoustic fittings and profiles brings maximum success in insulation. The heavy sound barrier is laminated with non-flammable sponges and then produced.
Acoustic carpets, which are resistant to flaming and burning, are among the alternative options that provide sound isolation in noisy environments with magnificent sound absorption properties.
They are both useful and stylish to choose for the floor of your home, office or even commercial places like cinema halls, conference rooms, and music studios!