Acoustics & Vibration

Acoustics & Vibration Services | Expert Noise Consultants 

Expert noise consultants - recognising, evaluating and controlling the adverse impacts of noise and vibration on people, the environment, structures and machinery


As the world becomes increasingly busy, mitigating the effects of noise and vibration on the environment and people has become increasingly important. Consideration of these issues must be given when introducing a new source of noise or vibration into an existing sensitive area or when locating a noise sensitive development within an already noisy location. Additionally, noise and vibration within the work place can also affect the health of individuals or reduce productivity if noise is not appropriately assessed and treated.


Our experts in the Acoustics and Vibration Group offer technical consulting in a range of areas from planning and environmental assessment, occupational noise & vibration exposure (i.e. noise at work, hand-arm vibration and whole-body vibration), pipework vibration, sound insulation testing, building & architectural acoustics and noise & vibration awareness training. Our acoustic consultants work across the full breadth of industries and sectors to help manage risks and find innovative solutions. Our specialist services include:


Regulatory authorities normally require a noise assessment to be undertaken as part of planning or licence applications for new developments which have the potential to generate noise and/or vibration that could affect existing residential or other noise sensitive receptors. Alternatively, a sensitive development may be planned at a location where existing noise and /or vibration from transport or industry could affect amenity. The Bureau Veritas Acoustics and Vibration team is able to provide a range of services in this area including:

  • Noise and vibration assessments to accompany a planning or licence application in line with British and International Standards
  • Noise modelling
  • Liaison and negotiation with regulatory authorities regarding noise limits and planning or licence conditions
  • Provision of engineering design advice to ensure that the noise and vibration emission from a proposed new or modified/existing plant complies with appropriate limits
  • Attendance at Public Inquiries into planning appeals as an expert witness
  • Policy advise to government and other regulatory authorities on noise and vibration issues


The Acoustics & Vibration Group has a long history of providing services in this area, both onshore and offshore. Whether an industrial plant, an offshore installation or a shipping or fishing vessel (under the Merchant Shipping and Fishing Vessels Control of Noise at Work Regulations), we can help by assessing employee’s noise and vibration exposure risks, and offering advice on how they can be managed and reduced to achieve compliance. Such services include:

  • Provision of management plans, policies and procedures to manage risks
  • Noise and HAV/WBV management audits
  • Workplace risk assessments
  • Provide colour contour noise maps highlighting hearing protection zones 
  • Noise and vibration exposure assessments
  • Detailed noise design and control studies
  • Measures to reduce occupational vibration
  • Identification of tools or processes likely to induce HAVS
  • Noise dosimetry studies
  • Vibration measurements and compilation of hand held equipment data sheets
  • Noise at Work training (awareness and competency)
  • Expert witness

We can also offer our bespoke Noise Exposure Management System (NEMS) and Vibration Exposure Management System (VEMS). These macro-based tools enable complex sites to clearly visualise and manage their overall risk rating, allowing targeted improvement measures to be easily identified.  Our Acoustics and Vibration team can offer services to those involved in building design and project management to ensure that satisfactory acoustic environments are engineered into buildings at an early stage in their design. We provide advice to architects, building services engineers, quantity surveyors/project managers, building control bodies and others involved in the design of new buildings in the following areas:


  • Sound insulation testing
  • Provision of specialist advice to design teams for new buildings in the education, health, leisure, commercial and industrial sectors
  • Provision of specialist advice to design teams for new residential buildings to assist in compliance with Approved Document E of the Building Regulations
  • Site inspection service at regular stages throughout the build to ensure that the acoustic design of the building is not compromised by factors such as selection of inappropriate materials or poor workmanship
  • Provision of consultancy services for remedial measures for buildings which do not meet the required standard
  • Accredited pre-completion testing in compliance with Approved Document E of the Building Regulations


Our expert team can provide a tailored measurement survey campaign to understand the source of the problem. Too often in the industry a generic stiffening of the pipework via additional supports and/or clamps is seen as the way ahead. But this is not always carried out with vibration in mind and may not be the only (or best) solution available.

  • Full scale or area focused Vibration Risk Assessments (VRAs) to evaluate and rank by risk the possible integrity threats within a plant/installation. All pipework is assessed via the use of a mixed technique including PSI pre-screening, vibration and dynamic stress measurements and visual assessments, etc
  • Comparing vibration data against accepted criteria and ranking it by the likelihood of failure in line with the Energy Institute Guidelines. Where problems are encountered, further investigation is carried out
  • Dynamic strain measurements (on both the main line and small bore connections); particularly useful to identify Small Bore Connections (SBCs) at risk of fatigue failure
  • Multi-channel ODS (Operational Deflection Shape) and modal analysis of the pipework or structure
  • Supporting with design and review stages when introducing supports and clamps, to ensure that these measures are effective against vibration threats
  • PSI pre-screening technique: a desk based assessment useful for both existing and FEED stage plants to identify vibration mechanisms not identifiable via the traditional measurement campaigns, such as Acoustic Induced Vibration (AIV), Flow Induced Vibration (FIV) and Flow Induced Pulsation (FLIP)
  • Pipework vibration awareness training to site personnel to help them understand the basics of pipework vibration and recognise good/bad configurations of supports
  • FEA simulation for structures affected by vibration. Recent projects include the FE analysis of skids supporting gas compressors and gas turbines and the introduction of additional stiffening to the skids


Where are you based?

Bureau Veritas has offices throughout the UK and is able to provide services within the UK and overseas. The Acoustics and Vibration team are predominately based in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Manchester and London.  We can also call upon many other specialists within the Bureau Veritas acoustics and vibration community around the world.

How quickly are you able to mobilise and provide a report?

Generally, we are able to provide a quick turnaround and mobilise within a few days on receipt of instruction. A report will generally be available within ten working days of completion of all monitoring surveys.

What resources do you have available?

We have a team located throughout the UK with equipment available for short and long term monitoring in order to meet your needs. All our noise and vibration equipment is calibrated using techniques traceable to national standards.

What software do you use for your assessment?

For more complex studies we can utilise noise prediction software. We have up to date licenses for CadnaA and SoundPlan for the mapping of environmental noise, NoiseAtWork software for occupational assessments and Insul for building acoustics.

Is your team certified to carry out these assessments?

All members of the Bureau Veritas Acoustics and Vibration Group have formal qualifications in acoustics or a similar engineering degree. Our consultants are registered with professional bodies such as the Institute of Acoustics (IOA), IMechE or ANC. Furthermore, several of our consultants have certificates for the OPITO Basic Offshore Safety Induction & Emergency Training and UKOOA Offshore Medicals.

Will the assessments be suitable to meet all requirements?

Prior to mobilising to commence with the study, Bureau Veritas will contact the relevant regulator to discuss the assessment methodology and requirements and submit a report suitable for submission to the regulator.

Do you undertake work outside the UK?

The Acoustics and Vibration team are involved in projects on a global basis and have travelled around the world to meet the needs of our clients.  We can also call upon many other specialists within the Bureau Veritas acoustics and vibration community around the world, with teams in France, Spain, Brazil, Singapore and Australia.

Do you provide recommendations to reduce noise levels?

We will recommend mitigation measures to reduce the significance of impacts due to the existing sources whether that is environmental or occupational.

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