Proposed Criteria for Low Frequency Noise from Combustion Turbine Power Plants

This paper proposes updated “C” weighted overall level limits that are necessary to avoid, or at least minimize, resident complaints from low-frequency industrial sources. The limits proposed are developed mainly from extensive experience at many problem installations using open-cycle combustion turbines for peak power generation. In open cycle operation, combustion turbine exhaust gases are discharged to atmosphere through a silencer/stack system. Low frequency noise problems are only associated with exhaust stack emissions from open cycle turbine plants. Such plants are used to drive generators for peak load applications by power companies, and to drive compressors for gas and liquid pipelines. Peak electrical loads usually occur during very hot summer months and/or very cold winter months. Typically the units operate daily during these periods, starting in early afternoon and shutting down by midnight. The units operate 24/7 for pipeline applications. As early as 1971, ANSI B133.8, “Gas Turbine Installation Sound Emissions” recommends a limit of 75 to 80 dBC to minimize the problem of low frequency noise or infrasound problems that were surfacing at that time. Experience since 1971 has shown that this recommendation is woefully inadequat, and that the problem continues to reoccur for combustion turbine open cycle plants. The paper shows that turbine exhaust spectra are tonal in nature as are most sources of low frequency noise. Therefore, it is believed that the proposed limits are also valid for other steady sources of low frequency noise, such as, compressor stations, wind turbines, diesel generators and others. The paper also shows that the standardized “C” weighted overall level is an adequate and ideal metric for regulation purposes.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: CD-ROM
  • Features: Figures; Photos; Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 922-931
  • Monograph Title: Noise-Con 04. The 2004 National Conference on Noise Control Engineering

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01054377
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Jul 26 2007 2:12PM