Author ORCID Identifier

Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. David W. Herrin


Mufflers and silencers are commonly used to attenuate noise sources such as internal combustion engines and HVAC systems. Typically, these environments contain mean flow that can affect the acoustic properties of the muffler components and may produce flow generated noise. To characterize the muffler performance, common metrics such as insertion and transmission loss and noise reduction are used in industry. Though transmission loss without flow is often measured and is a relatively simple bench top experiment and useful for model validation purposes, mean flow can significantly affect the muffler performance. There are a few existing and commercial transmission loss rigs that incorporate flow into the measurement procedure. These rigs are useful for model verification including flow but do not predict how the muffler will perform in the system since the source, termination, and pipe lengths significantly impact performance. In this research, the development of an insertion loss test rig is detailed. This testing strategy has the advantage of being simpler, quantifying the self-generated noise due to flow, and taking into account the effect of tailpipe length and a realistic termination. However, the test does not include the actual source and is not as useful for model validation. An electric blower produces the flow and a silencer quiets the flow. Loudspeakers are positioned just downstream of the flow silencer and they are used as the sound source. The low frequency source is a subwoofer installed in a cylindrical enclosure that includes a conical transition from speaker to pipe. Special care is taken to reduce any flow generated noise. Qualification of the system is detailed by comparing the measured transmission loss, noise reduction, and insertion loss to one-dimensional plane wave models. The results demonstrate that the developed rig should be useful as a muffler evaluation tool after a prototype has been constructed. The rig can also be used for transmission loss and noise reduction determination which will prove beneficial for laboratory testing.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)