Noise Reduction of the Ultra-Span Hollow Core Extruder
Ultra-Span Technologies Inc. is a company that manufactures hollow core concrete slab extruders. The Ultra-Span EXT-400Si extruder currently operates at a sound level above 85 dB causing operator discomfort. The objective of this project is to propose a final design that reduces the decibel level to a safe operating condition. Customer needs, constraints, and target specifications were defined to ensure that the proposed design met project intent. Part of the defined customer requirements include a noise level target specification of 80 dB and budget of $5,000. Extruder testing was completed along with research on noise reduction products and competitor solutions to generate concepts. From the concepts generated, three solutions progressed as final design solutions, including an extruder door redesign, anti-vibration rubber isolation mounts, and acoustic dampening material. The extruder door redesign was estimated to produce a 10 dB reduction in noise at a cost of $185.28. VibraSystems anti vibration rubber isolation mounts were chosen for isolation between vibration sources and the cassette and hopper, to produce a vibration percent isolation of approximately 99%. The total cost for all parts associated with implementing the anti vibration mounts is $483.54. Lastly, the addition of the closed-cell acoustic dampening material Pyrotek Decidamp sheets was estimated to reduce the noise by 20 dB, at a price of $3,601.22. The total cost of implementing the three designs is $4,270.04, which falls within the $5,000 budget. All three designs combined are expected to reduce the noise level by at least 20 dB, reaching the target specification of 80 dB. Core functionality was unaltered as well as slab quality and geometry expected are to stay the same. The team recommends the designs be implemented sequentially as listed, with testing completed after each change to evaluate effectiveness.