Cummins Power Generation has approved Project Sonitus, the construction of a state-of-the-art hemi-anechoic test chamber at the company’s headquarters in Fridley, Minn. The new testing facility will allow an intensified effort to further reduce sound levels of Cummins generators and other products. When completed, this facility will be the largest engine-test-facility of its kind in the world.
In preparing the site for construction, the company discovered a buried layer of soil contaminated with creosote, which had been used as a preservative coating for railroad ties and utility poles. This creosote use occurred at the Fridley site before the Onan Co. (later merged with Cummins) purchased the property in 1968.
Cummins Power Generation is working closely with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s (MPCA) Voluntary Investigation and Cleanup (VIC) Program and will be proceeding with an MPCA-approved Response Action Plan to manage the soil remediation activities. Although these soils could be left in place without a threat to human health, Cummins Power Generation has chosen to remove from the site entirely any impacted soil that may be found within the building footprint.
“Cummins Power Generation is proud to be setting the standard for acoustical testing,” says Gary Johansen, executive director, Worldwide Engineering, at Cummins Power Generation, “Just as we are continuing to work on reducing emissions from our products, so we are working to make them quieter. At the same time, we want to go the extra mile to protect our employees.”
Hemi-anechoic chambers have sound-absorbing acoustical treatment on the walls and ceiling, but they have hard floors with no acoustical treatment. The solid floor of the hemi-anechoic chamber is common for testing large and heavy equipment that is normally installed on a floor or other hard surface.