Today with Open Plan Spaces being the first choice, the importance of good acoustics and noise reduction in an office environment is the need of the hour right now and is growing up. Today, we are surrounded by sound at all times. Some sounds are pleasant and soothing; others are very very annoying and distracting which are the true factors behind our physical or psychological diseases, illness, or malfunctions.

Sound affects the way we feel and behave, and especially in our working environment, sound is particularly critical and very influential on our performance.

Complaints in the office often involve the lack of speech privacy, high noise levels and the distraction of, overheard extraneous conversations. These complaints risk becoming more pronounced when traditional office walls are replaced by partial height panels, which allow sound to circulate more freely throughout a space.

We enter here…

CASE STUDY: T HUB: T-Hub is the heart of the Telangana startup and technology ecosystem.

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T-Hub is a unique public/private partnership between the government of Telangana, 3 of India’s premier academic institutes (IIIT-H, ISB & NALSAR) and key private sector leaders. It stands at the intersection of the start-up, academic, corporate, research and government sectors.

T-Hub is designed for technology-related start-ups, and its mission is to catalyse the creation of one of the tightest and most vibrant entrepreneur communities in the world in order to encourage and fuel more start-up success stories in India.

The entire Hyderabad startup ecosystem with a state-of-the-art 70,000 square foot building called CatalysT, the largest building in India to be entirely dedicated to entrepreneurship. Located at the IIIT-H Campus, gachibowli, the sprawling building will bring the start-up community together by providing a platform for entrepreneurs, mentors, investors and academia to interact and collaborate.

The world-class infrastructure facilities at the building will be used for co-working spaces, meetings, mentoring, networking sessions and conferences. By giving access to top mentors, investors and academia, the T-Hub building will help every entrepreneur realize their dream; it’s the first open office space design, harnessing the green revolution technology.

  • Sound Levels measured at different Floors was 60-65 DB. A & C Weighting.
  • Actual Levels Measured at different Floors was 69-84 DB. A & C Weighting.

Project Lead Designer:

Noise & Acoustic Consultant:

Putting the Pieces Together-Technical annotates

In an open plan office, the STC (Sound Transmission Class) and NRC (Noise Reduction Coefficient) must be balanced to achieve good speech privacy, while background sound levels are comfortably maintained. The combination and interaction of the STC and NRC is measured as the Noise Isolation Class (NIC).

Actually a furniture system with a NIC of 21 will reduce sound by approximately 21 decibels between work stations. (This looks completely new to us). Developed in the 1970’s, this criteria has fallen into somewhat of non-use; probably though lack of understanding of it by those who should like the (Architects, Interior Designers and some amateur Carpenters) be using it in the design and evaluation of space have totally ignored it. (No Problem we can still can handle this ignorance)

Each component in the open plan can be tested under these criteria; however, an educated evaluation of traditional properties (NRC, STC, etc.) can suffice. (We will require that at a later stage)

It is important to recognize that all of the components in an open plan office – ceiling, walls, floor and partitions, don’t forget the HVAC and mechanical systems – contribute to or detract from the overall acoustical performance of the space, but today designers just tend to forget this balancing act, their focus remains only of the designing and the aesthetics of the office

Each component can only compensate so much for the poor performance of another component. When too many compromises are made, the overall performance suffers. “NO ONE COMPONENT CAN DO THE JOB. IT CAN ONLY DO ITS JOB!”

We must first understand the Performance criteria for open plan offices which must include:

  • Ceilings NRC .75 or higher
  • Partitions STC 21 or higher
  • Partitions NRC .70 or higher
  • Walls NRC .80 or higher
  • Floor (Carpeted) NRC .15

This basic understanding of sound, its measurement, and how to control it will help us to create the most functional acoustical environment in open plan and other office space.

Contact us for recommendations and consultations.  Do give us a call and we will do all we can to help resolve the issue. Call us on +919395333255 or Mail us at

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