Clink, Clank, Clunk – Quieting the Noisy Restaurant

Clink, Clank, Clunk – Quieting the Noisy Restaurant

Clink, Clank, Clunk – Quieting the Noisy Restaurant

NOISE-CON Keynote Preview: Acoustics and the Problem of Restaurant Noise

When was the last time a great meal was spoiled for you by the deafening din of restaurant noise? Did you mention it on your Yelp review?

Restaurant noise is, according to some, the number one complaint of restaurant patrons. 

This annoying problem – which can contribute to hearing damage -- is being researched and quantified by Dr. Lily Wang from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.  She will present her findings in a keynote address titled “The Acoustic Experience in Restaurant” at INCE’s NOISE-CON online conference on November 16, 2020 at 11 am ET.  Dr. Wang is a Professor in the Durham School of Architectural Engineering and Construction, and Associate Dean for Faculty and Inclusion in the College of Engineering at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.

The Restaurant Acoustics Experience
Restaurant sound levels depend on a variety of factors including room shape, surface materials, seating layout, and the levels of ambient and human-produced noise. Dr. Wang’s NOISE-CON presentation reviews recent work aimed at characterizing restaurant acoustics in real-world settings. Various acoustical measurements were taken before the restaurants were open and then during operating hours.  The data are being used to understand how sound levels in operating restaurants vary with occupancy and the levels of ambient noise sources, as well as how specific architectural and design features, such as seating style and density, may contribute to the acoustic experience.

About Dr. Lily Wang
Dr. Wang’s research focuses on a variety of room acoustic and noise control topics, including human perception and performance in noise, uncertainty in acoustic measurements, and room acoustics computer modeling. She received her BS in Civil Engineering from Princeton University and her PhD in Acoustics from Penn State University. Dr. Wang is a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA); Board-Certified by the Institute of Noise Control Engineering; a Professional Engineer licensed in Acoustics through the state of Oregon; and a recipient of the ASA Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship, ASA R. Bruce Lindsay Award, ASHRAE Ralph G. Nevins Physiology and Human Environment Award, and NSF CAREER Award. She has also received a number of teaching and mentoring awards, including the ASA Student Council Mentoring Award. She has served as ASA President (2018-19), Vice-President (2015-16), and Chair of its Technical Committee on Architectural Acoustics (2004-07).

Dr. Wang’s presentation is one of the three keynotes at NOISE-CON, the largest noise control event in North America.  This online event, which starts November 16 and runs over five days, features 120 papers in 40 data-rich technical sessions. It is the event that brings together engineers and scientists working in the field of noise control, acoustics, and vibration to network and exchange ideas about their profession.  For more information and to see the online conference agenda, visit

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