Product development and design

ISVR Consulting helps manufacturers to design and develop a wide range of products when noise or vibration are important. We can provide support at an early stage of the design process and this may include evaluation or benchmarking of competitor products to establish a design target, or an assessment of an existing product to identify the main sources of noise or vibration that need to be controlled.


Evaluation: benchmarking and characterisation

Often an important first step in product development is to assess or characterise the levels of noise or vibration and to identify the main noise and vibration sources in an existing product. An assessment may be carried out on early prototypes, or may include competitor products to identify and determine appropriate noise targets. As well as overall levels, we also consider specific characteristics of the noise quality, such as frequency spectrum, impulsiveness, tonality, intermittency, rattles or any detracting features.

Usually the objective is to minimise noise and any prominent features, but occasionally there is a need to maximise or enhance sound output, for example, in alarm sounders. Noise may be an intrisic or intentional feature of some products.  For example, a vacuum cleaner needs to sound powerful and smooth, but any additonal buzzes, whines, whistles or harshness will be annoying and detract from the build quality and a user’s satisfaction.

Initial testing may be carried out on the bench, but final production items can be fully tested in the acoustic chambers. The range of testing that may be carried out is very wide,  but may include the following:

  • Measurement of noise and vibration levels across the design range of speed and load settings
  • Measurement of the variability in noise and vibration levels between production items
  • Vibration or shaker testing for squeeks and rattles
  • Modal analysis and transfer function testing


Noise source identification

To reduce the noise and/or vibration of a product or an assembly we need to identify the main sources of noise and vibration. Appropriate modifications or refinements can then be developed and tested. We employ a range of methods to identify the dominant sources, including:

  • Screening or shielding of components
  • Isolation of components
  • Dividing products into sub-assemblies
  • Testing under load and no-load conditions
  • Measurement of the noise versus speed or noise versus load load characteristics
  • Ducting of inlet and outlet paths
  • Analysis of the response to continuous or impact excitation using shakers or instrumented hammer


Facilities for Product Development

The Product Development Lab

The Product Development Lab

To provide appropriate advice on product development, we can provide the following facilities:




We have worked for a wide range of clients on a varied range of products, large and small. Products include:

  • Extract fans
  • Food processors
  • Microwave ovens
  • Generator sets
  • Go-karts
  • Flushing mechanisms
  • Medical devices and equipment
  • Power tools
  • Audio-visual and computing equipment
  • Alarm sounders