Volume 8, 2024
|Number of page(s)
|04 January 2024
Impact of reduced sonic boom exposure on psychophysical and cognitive performance for simulated booms presented in a realistic indoor environment
Institut Jean Le Rond d’Alembert (UMR 7190), Sorbonne Université/CNRS, Paris, France
* Corresponding author: email@example.com
Accepted: 25 November 2023
This study aimed to quantify, in situations representative of the daily life of European citizens, the effects of sonic boom exposure on human responses, in the case of a new generation of supersonic commercial aircraft that should emit a reduced (compared to the past generation like Concorde) but perceivable boom while flying overland. Two reduced boom simulators were affixed to the bedrooms’ windows of a house located on our university campus. The simulators were used to study indoor the participants’ responses to realistic “outdoor” booms. Testing took place in both the living room and kitchen because the booms caused different intensities of rattle noise in those two rooms. Participants performed various tasks (communication, working memory, drawing, valence evaluation), took three mandatory rests and filled in various questionnaires about the annoyance caused by the booms and their mood. This paper focuses on the psychophysical and cognitive performance results. The booms resulted in delayed responses in the working memory task and in the valence evaluation task, and in a momentary slowing down in the drawing task. There was no significant effect in the communication task, even though a trend for a worsening of communication efficiency was observed. Taken together, the results suggest that reduced booms can interfere with cognitive and motor tasks by capturing attention, which can momentarily divert cognitive resources away from the task at hand. These results suggest future research directions and may lead to recommendations for future sonic boom regulations.
Key words: Sonic boom / Noise exposure / Human response
© The Author(s), Published by EDP Sciences, 2024
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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