Research Methods for Understanding Aircraft Noise Annoyances and Sleep Disturbance

This document explores the development and validation of a research protocol for a large-scale study of aircraft noise exposure-annoyance response relationships. Alternative research methods for field studies to assess the relationship between aircraft noise and sleep disturbance for U.S. airports are also investigated. This report presents the final documentation for the two parts of this project. Phase I included data collection for the purpose of testing an aircraft noise annoyance survey that can be used in a national study to update the dose-response relationship between noise exposure and the percentage of people who are highly annoyed. Two modes for collecting the survey responses were tested: telephone interview and mail questionnaire. The main goals were to compare response rates and yield for the two surveys, and evaluate whether the relationship between percent highly annoyed and aircraft noise exposure differs for the two survey modes. Findings show that response rates for the mail survey were much higher than those for the telephone survey. There is no evidence that the response of percentage highly annoyed differs between the telephone and mail surveys. Statistical tests show no significant difference overall between the mail and telephone surveys in percent highly annoyed. Respondents to the survey are disproportionately likely to be white non-Hispanic and age 50 or more, when compared with census figures, although the differences from the census are greater for the telephone survey than for the mail survey. Among the respondents, however, there is no statistically significant relationship, after accounting for the level of noise exposure and airport-to-airport differences, between these demographic characteristics and annoyance. The main objectives of Phase II were to develop at least two general research protocols to improve the understanding of the relationship between aircraft noise and sleep disturbance in a field setting; and to identify criteria to be used to test and evaluate the protocols. The two general research protocols outlined in this report (polysomnography or actigraphy plus ECG) are identical in aspects related to the selection of measurement sites, study population, acoustical measurements, and supplementary data gathered. The two research protocols differ in the methodology used to measure sleep. This primarily affects the staffing level needed to collect the physiological data in the field and to analyze the data afterwards. The per subject costs are higher for polysomnography, which limits the maximum number of investigated subjects at the same level of funding.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Edition: Contractor's Final Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 174p
  • Serial:
  • Publication flags:

    Open Access (libre)

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01534262
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 8 2014 2:05PM