EASE - Ray Tracing Program

In architectural acoustics, to study the control of reverberation levels and echoes, in a space, there were two traditional methods of analysis – Volumetric Calculations based on Sabines or Real Time Measurement at site.

Volumetric Calculations are theoretical calculations of the volume and absorption properties of the space to determine the reverberation levels. This is easily applicable to regular shapes and regular materials. However, it becomes more impractical for use volumetric calculations alone to determine the impact of the dominant surfaces in the rooms. Therefore it is ineffective for curved and sharp shapes and does not inform about the possibility of late order reflections that may arise in site conditions due to the shape of the room. It also does not take into account the impact and use of non regular material.

Real Time Measurements at Site are the best and most accurate method to determine the existing conditions in an existing place. As the decay is actually realized, it helps to understand the absorptive or reflective performance of the space. However it is expensive and time consuming as sometimes it is difficult to analyze and correlate the results with theoretical values when

  • if non regular materials are used
  • if there are delayed build up of energy and or any unexpected impact of the shape of the room
  • if and when unexpected developments take place which are a function of the event of measurement, i.e. some event during the time of measurement, which would impact the results

However this is not possible in design stages, when it is desirable to restrict the reverberation levels of the spaces, by adjusting the volume and shape of the space. This is where EASETM is very adaptable as a trial and error program. This helps to make a convergence of the creative mind of the architects and the physics related acoustical limits for the functionality of the space.

EASE is a software program, initially conceived by (Acoustic Design Ahnert) ADA, Berlin, Germany. Today RENKUS –HEINZ Inc. is the company promoting the use of the EASE progam worldwide.

What is EASE? - It is a ray tracing program whose algorithms generates a simulation of very accurate rate of decay for sound in a space, taking into account the impact of room shape, surfaces, materials and amount of noise levels generated by the sound amplification systems incorporated. The level of accuracy is determined by the number of particles or rays required to the meet the statistical accuracy required. As a result, it is a very iteration intensive software program which requires high speed computing abilities. This also determines the time involved to generate results. The time involved in the generation of a typical simulation is a function of the computing power of the computer.

The typical design procedure for a project is briefly explained.

  • Typically start with analysis of existing conditions without treatment
  • Using volumetric calculations, introduce ideal treatment conditions and simulate the site conditions
  • Based on the results, various trail and error effects to minimum treatment are considered
  • Application of actual sound systems into the space helps to further optimize the acoustical treatment

Advantages :

  • Helps to determine the reverberation levels of a space at conceptual / design stages
  • Helps to determine the existing echo levels in a space
  • Helps to determine the impact of varying degrees of treatment on echo levels by simulation of site conditions

  • Eliminates the need for time consuming and expensive trial and error efforts at site
  • Is very accurate in terms of results, providing input is correct
  • Can incorporate the position of sound amplification speakers to minimize the impact of bad locations of speakers

Thanks to Stewart Acoustical Consultants, MMG Acoustical Consultants have been issued one license for the use of EASE program in India.

Today one of the areas of support provided by MMG Acoustical Consultants to Stewart Acoustical Consultants is in the initial model development of the space into EASE for further analysis and sometimes assists in the runs of trials required. To this effect, MMG Acoustical Consultants plans to invest substantially into a computing system dedicated to the effective and fast turnabouts of simulation results for Stewart Acoustical Consultants.

EASE Model - Case 1 EASE Model - Case 2
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