Prediction of Muffler Insertion Loss by a Hybrid FE Acoustic-SEA Model 2009-01-2042
A reactive aftermarket automotive style muffler was considered for development and validation of a procedure to numerically predict and experimentally validate acoustic performance. A CAD model of the silencer was created and meshed. The silencer interior included two sections of perforated pipe, which were included in the cavity mesh. A hybrid FE-SEA (Statistical Energy Analysis) numerical model consisting of a finite element acoustic cavity excited by a diffuse acoustic field at the inlet and coupled via hybrid junctions to SEA semi-infinite fluids on both the inlet and outlet. The hybrid FE-SEA model solves very rapidly on a desktop PC making iterative numerical design a realistic option.
To validate the predictions, an experimental setup was created to directly measure the muffler insertion loss. This was done by using a broadband acoustic source piped into a hemi-anechoic chamber. A straight pipe with simple bends to recreate the path from muffler inlet to outlet was fabricated for comparison. Muffler insertion loss was calculated by means of a simple level difference between the silencer and the straight pipe. Agreement between experimental measurement and numerical prediction are excellent. A simple procedure allowing high confidence numerical evaluation of design iterations based on CAD models is outlined.