USE OF FEM TO IMPROVE TEACHING IN THE CLASSROOM: EDGE DIFFRACTION MODELING OF A CLASSICAL ACOUSTIC BARRIER
The analysis of wave motion is a subject of great relevance in many Degree and Master Programs of Technical Schools. In this kind of subject, experimental and practical training appears as an essential complement of theoretical fundamentals, studied and analyzed in the classroom in depth. Moreover, the understanding of the concepts that appear is often beyond the reach of the students (without adequate scientific training). In this sense, we believe that to facilitate understanding of these phenomena through visualization is one way to achieve meaningful learning. It is therefore important to model and to simulate the phenomena under study and, if possible, to compare them with experimental results obtained in practical sessions.
In this paper, we present the modeling of the acoustic behavior of traditional acoustic barriers by using the Finite Element Method (FEM), where you can incorporate the same features and materials used in practical cases. With this model, students can visualize the mechanism of reflection and diffraction of acoustic waves, the characteristics of wave phenomena, and also check the differences obtained when considering a phenomenon from a different point of view, such as geometric or wave treatment.
This paper describes a practical session of the subject ‘Environmental Acoustics’ focused on the characterization of the diffraction on the upper edge of a classic acoustic barrier. The practice session described carries out a new contextualization, where the student takes an active role in adjusting the learning process of their personal abilities. Different types of screens (or barriers) used in practice (various forms of device, different materials and top edge) are added as teaching resource support in digital format to the e-learning platform of the university (PoliformaT). The development of this platform implemented in the UPV facilitates the possibility to introduce these new teaching models which combine the traditional on-site laboratory assignments with other learning assignments conducted autonomously on-line by students. From this point, the student is able to access the theoretical foundations of the subject, the data provided and the modeling of different types of barriers provided.