Sound test results show a new wall round the Margaret River Substation is effectively reducing noise levels. Western Power, Australia, General Manager of Networks, Mark de Laeter said the wall and other changes to the substation had approximately halved the noise level coming from the substation. “We are pleased to have worked with the community to provide a reduction in the noise level and improve the look of the substation.
“Local residents and the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River worked with Western Power to choose the wall’s deep green color, and we understand they are pleased with the result.
“The lower wire mesh fence was adequate when the substation was established more than 40 years ago, but nearby housing development meant we had to make changes.” de Laeter said.
In 2007, noise measurements showed the hum from the transformers was, at times, as high as 54dB. Independent testing show noise levels are now around 24-29dB.
The volume of a normal conversation is 60-65dB, and a telephone dial tone 80dB.
The 3- to 4.5-m high 246-m long wall extends round three sides of the substation. It is made of double-reinforced autoclaved, aerated concrete, or AAC. AAC is light, strong, inexpensive and an effective sound absorber.
The replacement of two older transformers in favor of one, larger modern transformer has also contributed to the successful noise reduction.
The Margaret River Substation supplies electricity to about 6,000 customers along a network of lines and cables totaling more than 1000 km in length.