Action Overview

Launched on 1st May 2016 for 4 years, DENORMS Action gathers participants from 28 countries around one common goal, designing multifunctional, light and compact noise reducing treatments (Memorandum of Understanding of DENORMS Action).

denormsposterFINAL_legerNoise, especially at low frequencies, is a major environmental problem across Europe. Urbanisation, growing demand for motorised transport and inefficient urban planning are the main driving forces for environmental noise exposure. There is a pressing need for lighter, thinner and more efficient structures for the absorption of low frequency sound. Until now, porous materials have been the common choice for noise control due to their ability to dissipate sound through thermal and viscous losses. However, bulky and heavy porous material treatments are required to absorb low frequency sound. In addition, in many engineered systems (such as aircraft) the multifunctionality of the noise reducing components, which need to carry mechanical loads and provide thermal or electromagnetic insulation, is essential. This cannot be achieved using conventional porous materials.


For many years the development of noise reducing treatments has been the subject purely of acoustics research. However, recent scientific advances provide a unique and timely opportunity to bring about significant improvements in the design of noise treatments. Phononic and sonic crystals, acoustic metamaterials and metasurfaces, mostly developed in EU countries, can revolutionise noise control and in many cases replace traditional porous materials. The major breakthroughs are expected in the areas where the traditional acoustics overlaps with new branches of physics and mechanics. Moreover, it is expected that, not just attenuation, but also manipulation of sound by compact devices and structures will be an important next step in addressing this issue. It is therefore necessary to unite the efforts of all the scientific communities involved, which is the aim of this Action. Although the new materials/structures offer significant possibilities for noise and vibration control, together with good thermal insulation performance, the industries are not always aware of this and many of their benefits still need to find practical applications. For this reason, the whole Action relies on and promotes the cooperation of multidisciplinary teams of theoreticians, experimentalists and their industrial partners.

DENORMS Action is divided into 3 interacting Working Groups (WG), which complement each other. Each of them aims at specific breakthroughs.

WG1. Modelling of sound interaction with noise reducing materials and structures

WG2. Experimental techniques

WG3. Industrial applications

DENORMS main impact will be the competitive edge which the European manufacturing industry will get as a result of this research: EU leads on metamaterials and sonic crystals research, being a good opportunity to build up strengths in this area and develop innovative products. Another impact will be the capability of the EU to deliver noise control solutions which are slimmer, cheaper and more efficient. This will have a massive impact on the noise control project costs, material and energy consumed. Finally, the reduction of overall noise annoyance outdoors, in built and industrial environments will improve citizen welfare. The main industrial applications are: transportation, aviation, building industries, energy sector.

Regular events will allow to share the scientific knowledge and to provide a common background to all the Action partners:

  • 8 Workshops on specific scientific topics
  • 4 Training schools aimed at PhD students, early career investigators and the industry
  • Short-Term Scientific Missions (STSM)