I-INCE has started many new initiatives over the past few years that come under the Technical Activities portfolio. Raj Singh, my predecessor, has done an outstanding job, particularly with the focus on the education and mentoring of students and young professionals. During our formal education, we learn many things, but sometimes putting them into practice can seem daunting because of complexity, constraints, costs, durability, and negative impacts on machine performance. We are sometimes given a noise problem to solve that is not in our own core area of expertise, and we must educate ourselves on good strategies to approach this new noise problem. This is both exciting and challenging, particularly when you are at an early stage in your career and don’t yet have those experiences where you have successfully navigated the unknown!
The I-INCE Plenary Lecture Series started last year with Paul Donavan’s lecture on tire noise at INTER-NOISE 2017 in Hong Kong, which now has been turned into a YouTube video (http://i-ince.org/lectures.php). The idea is to gradually build up a library of videos that can inform people about different aspects of noise, its effects, and its control.
This year I-INCE is also piloting a Noise Control Engineering Practice School on the Sunday prior to INTER-NOISE 2018 in Chicago, where undergraduates, graduate students, and young professionals can learn about successful noise control projects from four experts working in the field. This school is in addition to the conference attendance grants, opportunities for networking, and workshops for young professionals that have become a regular part of INTER-NOISE Congress activities. These young people are the future of noise control engineering, and it is good that I-INCE has been proactive in finding ways to help them as they complete their formal education and embark on their careers.
I recently attended the ASA Summer School. There, the students who were attending heard, over the course of two days, one-hour talks from researchers working in many different aspects of acoustics. It was excellent: frogs, mammals, bubbles, wound cleaning and healing, cancer treatment, ocean dynamics, materials, signal processing, sound quality, sound and machine design—all connected by acoustics! It was such a pleasure to meet the students and hear about what they were doing. So I am optimistic that our new venture in Chicago is a great thing.
We need to reach out and work with the broader community so that sound is an integral part of early machine, environment, and space design—and is revisited continually throughout the design process. The noise control and acoustic consultants community has the expertise to make things better, but it is as though we are waiting for an invitation to the party, one that either doesn’t come or arrives too late. I struggle with this every time I go to a noisy restaurant or sit in a conference room listening to HVAC Symphony no. 405. How can we educate ourselves and others so that people naturally include sound or quiet in their vision for how a space or a product should be?
INCE Vice President for Technical Activities