Nissan has developed a new acoustic metamaterial to reduce road noise.
Road noise has long been a problem in cars, particularly when traveling at high speeds on the highway.
This is even more obvious in electric cars which don’t produce engine noise to help mask it.
Carmakers have long used rubber boards to reduce road noise inside vehicle cabins, but these are heavy, reducing energy efficiency.
Hyundai and Bose have of late adapted active noise cancelling technology like that used in headphones in an attempt to cancel out the sound waves.
Nissan has now taken a more innovative approach by creating a passive technology that doesn’t require any power or complicated, expensive microphone and speaker setup.
Weighing one-fourth of conventional sound insulation materials, the new metamaterial is comparable in cost to rubber boards – if not cheaper.
This is due to the acoustic metamaterial’s simple design, which is a lattice structure covered by a thin plastic film.
This arrangement, which looks a bit like bubble wrap with one side removed, helps reflect wide frequency band noise in the 500 to 1,200-hertz range hitting the material, reducing the amount that passes through.
Image and content: Nissan