Drone noise, a new public health challenge?

Torija Martinez, AJ ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5915-3736 2020, Drone noise, a new public health challenge? , in: Quiet Drones International e-Symposium on UAV/UAS Noise, 19th-21st October 2020, Remote from Paris (France).

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Abstract

There is a rapidly growing interest in manned and unmanned aerial vehicles of different size from small multi-rotor drones to Urban Air Mobility (UAM) vehicles. With the projected expansion of the sector, for a variety of applications from parcel delivery to transportation of people, it is very likely that urban and rural soundscapes will be altered by drone noise. This can lead to a significant source of community noise annoyance. This is the reason why it is widely accepted that noise is one of the largest limiting factors for public acceptance and adoption of drone technology. Unquestionable, if not tackled appropriately, the noise generated by drone operations might lead to significant tension with exposed communities. This paper aims to introduce the important uncertainty as to how communities will react to a new source of noise. Compared to conventional aircraft, drones generate an unconventional noise signature to which people are completely unfamiliar. Although with important broadband contributions, drone noise is highly tonal and has irritating frequency and amplitude modulations due to varying rotors rotational speeds. They will also flight closer to people and in a bigger number. An important factor to consider is that new communities, not currently affected by aircraft noise, will most likely be affected. Moreover, an overview on challenges and research gaps on noise effects of drones is provided: (1) It is uncertain whether the current evidence of health effects of aircraft noise will be of application. If not, new evidence will need to be gathered as to health effects of drone noise. (2) There are neither metrics able to account for the particular characteristics of drone noise nor information about acceptable levels. (3) There is no understanding on how the deployment of drones will affect the perception of current urban and rural soundscapes. Page | 2 (4) Community annoyance will be different depending on context, e.g. drone delivering medicines to remote areas vs. drone delivering parcels to your neighbours (5) For planning purposes, exposure-response functions for drone noise will need to be derived. This introduces the challenge of how to predict long-term effects.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Schools: Schools > School of Computing, Science and Engineering > Salford Innovation Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Quiet Drones International e-Symposium on UAV/UAS Noise 2020
Publisher: International Institute of Noise Control Engineering
Depositing User: Dr Antonio J Torija Martinez
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2021 14:10
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2021 14:10
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/59203

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