Architectural Acoustics: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Architectural Acoustics

1st Edition

By Ana M Jaramillo, Chris Steel


254 pages

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pub: 2014-11-07
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The application of good acoustic design can seem daunting to designers when trying to understand the often-complex physics of sound control. The ever-increasing number of standards and performance criteria that can be requested on new developments further complicates acoustics for architects.

Architectural Acoustics, part of the PocketArchitecture series, provides the fundamental theory and understanding of acoustics and applications of effective detailing for specific building types and conditions in an accessible and clear technical guide.

The book provides:

  • a compact and understandable introduction to the fundamentals of building and architectural acoustics
  • definitions of suitable acoustic performance criteria for a wide range of common buildings and room types
  • guidance on specification and detailing of the most suitable construction types in North America and the UK.

This book is both, a handy rule of thumb on acoustics for anyone involved in the design or construction of buildings, as well as an essential addition to any architect’s reference library.


"The science of acoustics as applied to buildings is complex and, worse still for the architect, surveyor and engineer, often apparently counter-intuitive. ‘Architectural Acoustics’ lifts the lid on the subject, clearly explaining the underlying principles and setting out useful and practical solutions for dealing with noise in all types of building. It should be the essential reference source for those involved in the design and delivery of new buildings and will be equally valuable to those working in the field of refurbishment and building alterations." Dave Baker OBE HonDEng FRICS FCIOB, Chief Executive, Robust Details Limited

"Jaramillo and Steel have produced a handy reference where an architect, and others, can turn when basic information about acoustics is needed – from basic concepts to spaces ranging from educational buildings to hotels and just about everything in between." - Journal of the Audio Engineering Society

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements Part 1: Principles 1.Basic Concepts 2. Interaction of Sound Wave and Medium 3. Human Hearing 4. Sound Measurements 5. Noise 6. Room Acoustics Part 2: Applications 7.Educational Buildings 8. Healthcare 9. Offices 10. Theaters/Auditoriums 11. Concert Halls 12. Dwellings 13. Commercial 14. Hotels Appendix A: Design Tables and Equations Appendix B: Performance Criteria Appendix C: Performance Specifications Index

About the Authors

Ana M. Jaramillo holds a BSc in architecture (2003), MS in architectural acoustics (2005) and a PhD in architecture (2013). Her previous roles include: Acoustical Consultant (2003-2008); Acoustics Professor and Researcher at the Instituto Tecnologico Metropolitano in Medellin, Colombia (2006-2008); and Instructor at Virginia Tech, USA (2012). Ana currently works for AFMG in North America.

Chris Steel, BSc (Hons), MPhil, MIOA, ICIOB, is Senior Acoustic Consultant at the Robin Mackenzie Partnership and Senior Research Fellow at Edinburgh Napier University, UK, focusing on building and environmental acoustics. Chris also lectures to MSc students on architectural acoustics and is a tutor for the Institute of Acoustics Diploma in Acoustics.

About the Series


Technical Design Series

The design and construction of buildings and facilities is no small feat. It requires a great deal of technical knowhow. Building professionals utilize ‘rules of thumb’ to make many of these technical decisions, much of which is unwritten based on traditional approaches of adherence to cultural codes of practice and building regulations. Students and professionals in architecture, engineering and construction have little scientific or fundamental physics as a basis for these decisions. This lack of technical understanding and access to need-to-know information inevitably leads to inappropriate technical design decisions.

PocketArchitecture:Technical Design Series is intended to fill this void. It comprises succinct, easy to use, topic-based volumes that collate in one place unbiased, need-to-know technical information about a particular subject area.  This series demystifies the scientific basis for technical design solutions, illustrating how fundamental scientific theory has been used to develop both traditional and innovative construction techniques and practices.

Books within the PocketArchitecture:Technical Design Series each provide a ‘fundamentals’ section in which the underlying scientific theory relating to the topic is presented and an ‘applications’ section that describes how the scientific theory has been applied to technical design solutions. The highly illustrated ‘applications’ section explains the scientific basis for common technical design ‘rules of thumb’, for traditional and innovative construction practices and for relevant codes of practice and building regulations and comprises the majority of each volume.

Learn more…

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