If you live in a big city then you know how annoying noise can be.
So when I heard about the team at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, I had to go see in person what they were working on.
And trust me it’s very exciting. They are one of my favorite warriors on the planet, by far.
Researchers have developed noise-canceling technology that allows open windows to block noise
A team of researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore developed a prototype, called the Anti-Noise Control Window, that expands the concept of noise-canceling headphones to encompass an entire room. The prototypes consist of 24 small speakers that are placed in a window and emit sound waves that correspond to incoming noise and cancel it out.
To capture incoming sounds, the system uses a microphone positioned outside the window to detect sound waves, and a computer controller to determine the wave frequency needed to neutralize the sound. This is then transmitted to the speakers on the window frame.
Researcher Dr. Bhan Lam, at Nanyang’s Centre for Information Sciences and Systems, explains his interest in the project: “I grew up in Singapore. It’s a small city with a lot of noise, so I have some motivation to solve this problem.” The system is best at moderating the types of steady noise sources found between 300 and 1,000 hertz. Unfortunately, this does not include most human voices. Thus, one of the next hurdles will be to find a way to muffle loud conversations.
Noise is one of the banes of modern existence, so it is no surprise that we have seen a number of innovations aimed at making life quieter. These include sound-absorbing chairs for offices and noise-reducing acoustic panels made from wool.