Presenting the MAUS project on traffic auralisation

In the MAUS project, we have developed a prototype of a traffic auralisation tool. The idea is to realistically imitate the sound of traffic, to give an idea of how it will sound in cases that have not been realised yet, and to show the effects of various noise-reducing measures. We have previously given a simple description of how the tool works together with sound examples on this blog.

In early December, we presented a paper and a poster on the MAUS auralisation tool at the 18th International Conference on Digital Audio Effects (DAFx-15) here in Trondheim. This conference was organized by the Music Technology and Acoustics groups at NTNU.

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How do you imitate the sound of traffic?

We previously wrote about the MAUS project, where we are building an auralisation tool to simulate the sound from virtual noise sources outdoors in order to give a realistic representation of how a future noise source will sound when it has been developed. One such noise source that we have been working on is traffic, one of the biggest issues in environmental acoustics. But how do you simulate the sound of traffic on a computer?

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MAUS: Auralisation of outdoor noise

Imagine that a new road was planned for construction close to your house. Naturally, you might want to know how much this would impact the noise situation in the area where you live. Currently, what the developers would be able to tell you are numbers called equivalent levels that describe the noise increase in your area. While these numbers may be based on excellent simulations and may be entirely correct, numbers are no substitute for listening!

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