Sonic boom propagation around a large building using a combined ray tracing/radiosity method

Kimberly A. Riegel, Victor W. Sparrow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The topic of supersonic flight over land is being investigated by scientists and regulators alike. The study of how the sonic boom behaves in and around buildings is of particular interest because of the potential impact of the noise on humans. This study examines the sound field as modeled by a combined ray tracing/radiosity method for sonic booms around large structures. These simulations are compared with the data from the 2009 Sonic Booms on Big Structures (SonicBOBS) test that was performed by NASA at Edwards Air Force Base. The influence of the complexity of the facade features, absorption coefficients, and scattering coefficients are examined. The results show general agreement between the simulation and the measured data. It was also shown that including diffuse reflections in the model does not have a dramatic effect on the resulting signature and does not improve the comparisons with the measurements. Therefore, including diffuse reflections is not worth the additional computational cost for an isolated building.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2317-2327
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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