Acoustical Treatments on Ventilation Ducts through Walls: Experimental Results and Novel Models

Erik Nilsson, Sylvain Ménard, Delphine Bard Hagberg, Nikolaos Georgios Vardaxis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sound reduction is complex to estimate for acoustical treatments on ventilation ducts through walls. Various acoustical treatments are available for ventilation ducts, including internal lining (absorption along the inner perimeter), external lagging (external sound insulation), silencer, and suspended ceilings. Previous studies have examined how silencers and the internal lining affect the sound transmission of ventilation ducts. However, there are few theories to predict the effect of external lagging in combination with ventilation ducts and how the total sound reduction is affected. This article aims to investigate different acoustical treatments and develop theoretical models when external lagging with stone wool is used to reduce flanking sound transmission via the surface area of ventilation ducts. Theoretical models are developed for external lagging and compared with measurement data. Measurements and theory are generally in good agreement over the third-octave band range of 100–5000 Hz. The developed models clarify that the distance closest to the wall has the main impact on sound reduction for a combined system with a wall and a ventilation duct. Suspended ceilings and silencers are found to be enough as acoustical treatments for certain combinations of ventilation ducts and walls. However, external lagging seems to be the only effective solution in offices and schools when a large ventilation duct passes through a wall with high sound reduction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)276-296
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Mar

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Building Technologies
  • Fluid Mechanics and Acoustics


  • breakin
  • breakout
  • external lagging
  • flanking sound transmission
  • sound reduction
  • ventilation duct


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