Statistical properties of kinetic and total energy densities in reverberant spaces

Finn Jacobsen, Alfonso Rodriguez Molares

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Many acoustical measurements, e.g., measurement of sound power and transmission loss, rely on determining the total sound energy in a reverberation room. The total energy is usually approximated by measuring the mean-square pressure (i.e., the potential energy density) at a number of discrete positions. The idea of measuring the total energy density instead of the potential energy density on the assumption that the former quantity varies less with position than the latter goes back to the 1930s. However, the phenomenon was not analyzed until the late 1970s and then only for the region of high modal overlap, and this analysis has never been published. Moreover, until fairly recently, measurement of the total sound energy density required an elaborate experimental arrangement based on finite-difference approximations using at least four amplitude and phase matched pressure microphones. With the advent of a three-dimensional particle velocity transducer, it has become somewhat easier to measure total rather than only potential energy density in a sound field. This paper examines the ensemble statistics of kinetic and total sound energy densities in reverberant enclosures theoretically, experimentally, and numerically.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAcoustical Society of America. Journal
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)2332-2337
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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Copyright (2010) Acoustical Society of America. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the Acoustical Society of America.


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