Follow up research sound on ships


The Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment (I&M) has commissioned the combination DPA Cauberg-Huygen, Level Acoustics & Vibration and Rubber Design to carry out a study of noise levels on ships sailing the inland waterways. The ships that are of concern in this research are ships built before 1976 and that sail the Rhine. An exploratory study conducted in 2013-2014 shows that the noise levels on these ships are often too high. This follow-up research should not only verify these early findings, but also provide insight into the cost of noise reducing measures and insight in whether the standards can be applied flexibly. The study will be completed in early 2015.


Noise guidelines on the Rhine

Barges on the Rhine must meet international noise requirements that are agreed by the ‘Centrale Commissie voor de Rijnvaart’ (CCR) and are laid down in the ‘Reglement voor onderzoek van schepen op de Rijn’ (ROSR). These requirements were introduced in 1975. Ships built after 1975 already meet these requirements. In 2003 the transition period for ships constructed before 1976 has been set to end on January 1st 2015. In the meantime, the deadline has been extended to January 1st 2020. Vessels built before 1976 must comply from to these prevailing noise requirements from then onwards. The branch organisations for these ships have reported to the Ministry that if they have to meet the noise requirements this will lead to technical and / or financial problems for various categories of ships. Research conducted in 2013-2014 by TNO and Level Acoustics & Vibration has confirmed the above.



Earlier research results show that high noise levels occur especially in the living and sleeping areas. Excessive noise levels can cause sleep disturbance, fatigue and concentration problems, which causes dangerous situations on and around the ship and is a danger for the health of the crew. DPA Cauberg-Huygen and Level Acoustics & Vibration will carry out noise and vibration measurements on a number of ships. The measured noise and vibration levels will be assessed to determine the dominant noise sources of the vessel. The study also looks at possible noise reducing measures and their costs. Rubber Design has extensive experience in these type of measures. In addition to the technical aspects, the researchers will also investigate the standards. The main question asked is: is it possible that, under certain conditions, a more flexible assessment of the noise standards is maintained? For example by only applying the standards to the bedroom and not the whole living area.


Combining forces

The research team consists of DPA Cauberg-Huygen, Level Acoustics & Vibration and Rubber Design. This combination of forces ensures experience, expertise and the capacity to carry out the investigation within the deadline. DPA Cauberg-Huygen acts as coordinator of the study.



Claire Laudij-van Koot (Level Acoustics & Vibration)
Arnold Koopman (Level Acoustics & Vibration)
Carel Ostendorf (DPA CaubergHuygen)
Jan Visser (Rubber Design)