Prediction of Vehicle Interior Sound Pressure Distribution with SEA 2011-01-1705
Statistical Energy Analysis (SEA) is the standard analytical tool for predicting vehicle acoustic and vibration responses at high frequencies. SEA is commonly used to obtain the interior Sound Pressure Level (SPL) due to each individual noise or vibration source and to determine the contribution to the interior noise through each dominant transfer path. This supports cascading vehicle noise and vibration targets and early evaluation of the vehicle design to effectively meet NVH targets with optimized cost and weight.
A common misconception is that SEA is only capable of predicting a general average interior SPL for the entire vehicle cabin and that the differences between different locations such as driver's ear, rear passenger's ear, lower interior points, etc., in the vehicle cannot be analytically determined by an SEA model. However, because the interior acoustic energy distribution varies due to absorption and distance effects that can be modeled, an SEA model is capable of predicting the SPL at different interior locations with good accuracy at high frequencies.
This paper discusses the SEA modeling assumptions used to generate a typical model of a vehicle cabin interior and surrounding structure. The distribution of acoustic absorption and its effect on the local interior SPL responses are addressed. Measurements of transfer functions to various points of the vehicle interior from exterior and interior acoustic sources and structureborne sources for a typical vehicle are presented and compared to SEA model predictions. Observations and recommendations about typical interior transfer function correlation, modeling limitations, and use of the SEA model as a design tool are given.