acoustic rail

Managing the noise from railways and tunnels is becoming an increasing issue along major rail corridors in Australia – particularly those within close proximity of housing and offices. Often, industrial solutions involve unsightly concrete walls to manage noise, but there are more appealing, effective alternatives.

The more people benefit from noise attenuation, the more funding that can be found to assist railway authorities to reduce noise. For example, TfNSW Freight Division has a budget to double glaze buildings and insulate them in critical areas of the network.

The next step is to reduce the noise at its source. STRAILastic offers a “noise attenuation tool box” for dealing with sound and vibration from railways for acoustic engineers and asset managers to choose from, in new and existing transport systems.

Inside the “noise attenuation tool box”

Acoustic engineers first determine the level of noise at the boundaries using noise maps. STRAILastic products are designed to trap and reduce the noise where it is generated inside the railway corridor and, more importantly, as close as possible to the source.

STRAILastic then works with the acoustic engineers to establish which combination of mini sound walls, panels and web dampers (the tool box) will most cost-effectively reduce noise where it is generated and to achieve a significant noise reduction.

The panels can be retrofitted into existing sleepered tracks with steel sleeper extensions but where the mini walls are outside the tamping area.

Alternatively, the walls can be bolted to their own foundations such as mini piles/ ground screws or concrete foundation using fully integrated steel frame moulded into the product.


An aesthetic solution

Although it isn’t always possible to substitute high noise barriers everywhere, in many locations such as high embankments, viaducts and bridges, mini sound walls can replace the need for these highly- engineered structures.

Mini sound walls have a very low visual impact which can be further reduced by attaching screen-printed local scenes on the obverse side. These walls don’t need planning approval to be installed, which can be another major challenge with large concrete panel walls.

The new mSW 730 noise absorbing panels can substantially reduce noise from the wheel rail interface and corrugation vibration from the top of rail and absorb it before it reaches the boundary of the rail corridor.

STRAILastic typically suggests a combination of rail web dampers using its INOX 2.0 dampers with the various mini sound walls as appropriate.

TP panel – a solution specifically designed for tunnels

Another common issue in railways and inside the rolling stock is managing the noise from tunnels. Due to pressure and suction forces that can be created by trains travelling through tunnels, acoustic panelling needs to be able to withstand extreme forces, while also able to reduce noise and allow for easy maintenance.

To address this common issue, STRAILastic offers the STRAILastic_TP tunnel paneling, which is designed and developed specifically for use in rail tunnels. The paneling features a moulded curve that is designed to perfectly fit the contours in tunnels, for each tunnel’s unique curve.

STRAILastic_TP panels are attached directly to the tunnel wall with mounting rails, allowing individual panels to be replaced at any time.

The panels, designed with their noise absorbent acoustic surface and robust frame, is able withstand the extreme pressure and suction forces allowing for speeds of up to 120km/h.

This sponsored editorial is brought to you by STRAILastic. For more information, visit

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