Can interior acoustic treatment be ‘heard’ and not seen?

By using Ecophon Fade® Acoustic Plaster, the complex curvature and elegant simplicity of the surface of the 2021 extension of education areas at The Louvre Museum in central Paris were retained while allowing for improved acoustic performance in line with the interior’s usage. (Image: supplied)

Users of interior spaces where high acoustic-performance characteristics are needed are familiar with the sight of acoustic devices such as islands, baffles, dispersion finishes, or contours. Ceilings tend to require perforated ceiling tiles or boards for the purpose of controlling sound energy. These spaces take their appearance as a union of form and function. What if similar performance within defined interior designs can be achieved with a simple monolithic finish?

Saint-Gobain is committed to making the world a better home, driving innovative solutions development. One such solution is the Saint-Gobain seamless monolithic ceiling acoustic plaster. The combination of high-density glasswool panels finished with a smooth plaster can be installed directly onto surfaces and suspended from Gypframe® ceiling grids. The ease and speed of installation allows for the use of the Ecophon Fade® Acoustic Plaster system for finishing straight, curved ceilings, acute angles, and arched domes.

Interior designers and acousticians have the benefit of designing a system that can be repaired with ease should damage occur and, furthermore, can be extended should the need arise.

Lightweight construction materials commonly found throughout the built environment have defined characteristics. Consider perforated gypsum plasterboard, such as Rigitone® or Gyptone® – these offer a particular visual cue that acoustics are being considered in the ceiling or on the wall. This may be ideal in specific design goals; however, not every interior is suited to such an overt approach.

Ecophon Fade® Acoustic Plaster, through its combination of effective acoustic management and visual neutrality, satisfies the need for the provision of acoustic solutions where the impact is heard and remains unseen.

While new to Sub-Saharan Africa, European landmarks have enjoyed the benefit of Fade®. The Louvre Museum, recognised as the world’s largest art museum, rose in central Paris in the late 12th century. Constantly evolving, the home of the Mona Lisa sought to bring best conditions to the 2021 extension of education areas, while keeping the signature design of the original areas. This required keeping the complex curvature and elegant simplicity of the surface. While plasterboard and gypsum plaster would allow for the aesthetic requirement to be met, acoustic performance would not align with the interior’s usage. Saint-Gobain’s palette of solutions offered the right solution, the Fade Acoustic Plaster system.

The unique combination of glasswool and acoustic plaster does require familiarisation for the installer. Support for the system is available through the Saint-Gobain academy in South Africa, with either pre-installation or onsite installation support for installers.

The fifth wall (ceiling) continues to seamlessly integrate with other walls and floors, following the Saint-Gobain purpose of making the world a better home.

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