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Large-scale project in the Netherlands

Development of new highly absorbing noise screens

High speed requires optimal noise protection: accordingly a high-speed railway in the Netherlands linking Amsterdam and Paris is being fitted with highly absorbing noise screens at several of its sections. The R&D work that went into this special delivery took about a year. Meanwhile, 15,000 square metres have already been sent to the Netherlands. A progress report:

The HSL Zuid (Hogesnelheidslijn Zuid) connects Amsterdam and Rotterdam with Antwerp, Brussels and Paris. The high-speed train will greatly reduce travel times between these European cities, yet the high velocity and number of trains operated will raise the noise level along the route. In order to keep the noise down as much as possible for its neighbours, the noise barriers are being modernised, extended and raised in some places.

Matching the existing steel structure

Work is in full swing in Lansingerland and Zoetermeer. More work is planned for Hoogmade, Rijpwetering, Ringvaartaquaduct, Mookhoek and Zwijndrecht. With these projects, noise protection will be significantly improved for the neighbours. As a special feature, existing noise-reflecting elements are replaced by highly absorbing aluminium panels and new transparent elements. The new noise barrier must therefore fit the existing structure of steel uprights. Altogether 10 kilometres of the present elements are replaced by highly absorbing panels, with three kilometres of elements newly added.

Complex requirements

In addition to the stringent acoustic criteria to be met, the national standards applicable in the Netherlands had to be accounted for. Moreover, the elements need to withstand train velocities of up to 330 km/hr and the accompanying suction and pressure impact. What’s more, the Forster project team was confronted with another obstacle: after kicking-off the development in the Netherlands, all further communication with the customer BAM Infra had to be handled online due to the covid-19 pandemic.

A detailed project report will be furnished in one of the next issues of the Forster Aktuell.

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