Baden Württemberg-based software specialist SoundPLAN has developed a noise mapping tool intended to help railways better understand and mitigate lineside noise emissions.
This takes information on the types of rail and rolling stock on a given route, as well as operating parameters including train frequency, size and speed. It then produces graphical representations of noise emissions using colours to depict different impacts.
The results cover two main outputs: an emissions value and a propagation calculation. The software features a library into which operating data can be added; noise emission levels are calculated for the hourly equivalent sound level and can also be assessed for maximum noise level. Sound power or sound pressure levels can be also calculated at a given reference distance from the rail and at different points along the line, accounting for changes in traffic or rail type.