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Eckel Noise Control Technologies: Test Chamber Helps Bobcat Accelerate Design and Engineering
Cambridge, Mass. — Nov. 18, 2015 — Bismarck, N.D., might not be as famous as Fargo — with its namesake movie-turned-TV series — but as the state capital and home to the Bobcat Co. Acceleration Center, it has its own claims to fame.
The Acceleration Center is a flagship research, design, and engineering facility. Opened just over a year ago, the 190,000-square-foot complex is a magnet for young engineering talent and cutting-edge technology. And that’s exactly why Bobcat contracted Eckel Noise Control Technologies to design and install a state-of-the-art test chamber there.
“Bobcat is world-renowned for its construction, landscaping, and agriculture equipment. Their Acceleration Center is an exemplary facility for innovation and testing,” said Eckel Vice President Jeff Morse. “Being chosen to contribute to such a place is a true honor and we’re proud that our chamber is helping to support Bobcat’s superb design and engineering.”
The Eckel SuperSoft Test Chamber provides a customized solution for evaluating noise and vibration emitted by Bobcat machines and components. It features high-performance perforated metal sound-absorbing panels, which are installed using a track and batten system. The V-ridged panel facings help maximize noise reduction.
Designed to match or exceed the sound-absorption characteristics of an existing chamber at Bobcat’s Gwinner, N.D., facility, the Eckel chamber blocks the transmission of noise from testing in other parts of the Acceleration Center to provide a totally insulated and quiet environment.
The chamber is big enough to hold some of Bobcat’s larger equipment, such as skid steer loaders, compact track loaders, and compact excavators. The room’s ventilation and exhaust systems allow for operating the machines under full load, while the floor grid supports the bolting down of fixtures for component tests on engines, hydraulic systems, and cooling systems. Installed hydronic lines provide external cooling.
Internally, the chamber measures 50 feet long by 51 feet wide and 25 feet high. The walls, ceiling, and doors are covered with Eckel’s SuperSoft perforated metal panels. The chamber has a 200-Hertz cutoff frequency (meaning it is 99 percent sound energy-absorptive at frequencies of 200 Hertz or higher). It meets the ISO 3745 standard for transmissibility and has a base ambient sound level of 22 dBA, exceeding Bobcat’s target of 30 dBA.