A major telecommunications company has been retrofitting its service offices with new diesel generator units that can provide greater backup power. The offices are located in urban, small town, and suburban areas, often near residential and other business properties.

The original backup generators range from 30 KWe to 165 KWe. They are located either indoors, typically on the first floor or in basement rooms, or outdoors in weatherproof enclosures. The new generators range from 50 KWe to 350 KWe and normally replace the original units at the same indoor or outdoor locations.

Acentech consulted with the responsible teams on individual projects from the preliminary engineering phase through the construction and initial operation phases. Our responsibilities have included: characterization of the existing ambient sound environment and the original generator sound; review of the state and local noise requirements; development of project noise goals; recommendation of a turn-key equipment noise specification; recommendations of noise mitigation options, treatments, and designs; and field evaluation of the noise of the new equipment to check compliance with purchase specifications and project noise goals. The generators are used for backup service only with brief maintenance runs limited to weekday hours, however, the units must be designed for continuous 24/7 service.

To support the owner’s twin goals of being a “good acoustic neighbor” and addressing the applicable state and local noise regulations, we have advised the project teams in the specification and design of the new generators, which often results in an installation that is 5 to 20 dBA quieter than the original one and well-accepted by the community.

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