sonRAIL – The New Swiss Calculation Model for Railway Noise

  • M. Hecht
  • J. M. Wunderli
  • T. Thron
  • D. Sehu
Part of the Notes on Numerical Fluid Mechanics and Multidisciplinary Design book series (NNFM, volume 118)


The new Swiss calculation model for railway noise called sonRAIL is presented. The sound propagation model as well as the emission model is designed to simulate fundamental physical processes. Therefore, they allow a reproduction of current situations and prediction of the effects of different mitigation measures. The model precisely calculates emission levels, taking into account all relevant variables. The emission levels are determined as sound power spectra for five source heights. The rolling noise is calculated with wheel and rail roughness spectra. The influence of different superstructure types is taken into account. The propagation model considers the direct sound propagation, meteorological effects, and reflections at buildings, walls, and other rigid surfaces, and diffuse reflections at forest edges and cliffs are described. As a first broad application of the model, the results of the sound exposure along the Gotthard railway line in Switzerland are shown.


Sound Propagation Emission Model Shadow Zone Source Height Sound Speed Profile 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Thron, T., Hecht, M.: The sonRAIL emission model for railway noise in Switzerland. Acta Acustica united with Acustica. Accepted by Acta Acoustica, April 20 (2010)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Rohrbeck, A., Thron, T.: sonRAIL – Die Erweiterung des schweizerischen Lärmmodells für den Schienenverkehr, ZEVrail Gl. Ann. 132, 95–105 (2008)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Standardization, I.O. o., ISO 9613-1: Acoustics - Attenuation of sound during propagation outdoors, Part 1: Calculation of the absorption of sound by the atmosphere (1993)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Standardization, I.O.o., ISO 9613-2: Acoustics - Attenuation of sound during propagation outdoors, Part 2: General method of calculation (1996) Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Chessell, C.I.: Propagation Of Noise Along A Finite Impedance Boundary. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 62(4), 825–834 (1977)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Delany, M.E., Bazley, E.N.: Acoustical properties of fibrous absorbent materials. Applied Acoustics 3, 105–116 (1970)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Hofmann, J., Heutschi, K.: An engineering model for sound pressure in shadow zones based on numerical simulations. Acta Acustica United with Acustica 91(4), 661–670 (2005)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Heutschi, K.: Calculation of Reflections in an Urban Environment. Acta Acustica United with Acustica 95(4), 644–652 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Heutschi, K.: Sound Propagation over Ballast Surfaces. Acta Acustica United with Acustica 95, 1006–1012 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Heutschi, K., Bayer, R.: Sound radiation from railway tunnel openings. Acta Acustica United with Acustica 92(4), 567–573 (2006)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Heutschi, K.: Sound propagation in railway line cuttings. Applied Acoustics 69(12), 1189–1194 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Standardization, I.O.o., ISO 3095: Railway applications – Acoustics – Measurement of noise emitted by railbound vehicles (2005) Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Hecht
    • 1
  • J. M. Wunderli
    • 2
  • T. Thron
    • 3
  • D. Sehu
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Rail-vehiclesTU BerlinBerlinGermany
  2. 2.Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, Laboratory for AcousticsEMPADuebendorfSwitzerland
  3. 3.PROSE GmbHBerlinGermany
  4. 4.Noise Abatement DivisionFederal Office for the Environment FOENBernSwitzerland

Personalised recommendations