Innovation That Matters

Noise pollution addressed by smart-city research


Singapore invests in research for sound attenuating materials.

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Do good neighbours make good fences or good fences make good neighbours? Who knows. But in July 2016, Singapore’s Housing Development Board, in partnership with manufacturing company 3M Singapore, announced plans for the research and development of materials designed to absorb, reflect or reduce the transmission of noise between urban apartments in close quarters.

The plans are part of a wider scheme to become a wholely smart city. The contract is worth USD 10 million and other areas of development include a smart traffic light system that feeds into a wider energy saving drive across the city-state. In terms of noise reduction, areas to be explored could include the study of suitable materials for walls, floors and windows that can absorb, reflect or reduce the transmission of noise within flats, to create a more pleasant living environment. HDB’s chief executive officer, Dr Cheong Koon Hean, said: “We are living in a fast-changing urban landscape, with new planning issues to tackle and new housing needs to meet. We need new partnerships and innovative ideas to keep HDB moving forward.”

Springwise has seen some interesting ideas in the category of smart cities, such as this innovation that uses bacteria to generate sustainable light. What other innovations could address the need to update our urban lifestyle?



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