NOISY - AI Powered Automated Airplane Noise Reporting
NOISY automatically tracks the intensity, duration and location of airplane noise and uploads it to the cloud for further processing.
NOISY - AI Powered Automated Airplane Noise Reporting
NOISY automatically tracks the intensity, duration and location of airplane noise and uploads it to the cloud for further processing.
Hi, we are the NOISY Team.
Our mission is to help you achieve the peace and quiet you deserve. Specifically, if you live around airports.
That's why we created NOISY: An AI-Powered Automated Airplane Noise Tracking & Reporting System that can automatically send noise complaints to your participating local airport and, even more importantly, save evidential data for future use.
The FAA turned your world upside down. They introduced new flight paths and caused an increase in neighborhood airplane noise... without consulting the people most impacted - you, who lives near the airport.
The FAA tells you the noise is within permitted limits but your ears tell you otherwise.
You were shocked, helpless, angry and overwhelmed. Maybe you felt nothing could be done. Or perhaps you started a support group, used the airport's online complaint portal and told everyone who would listen that you are drowning in airplane noise. Your home value fell, your blood pressure rose, but the noise has remained relentless.
You wonder what can be done? You live with the noise, LOUD noise. When does it happen precisely? How long are the planes over your house? Has it gotten worse? You ask: "Am I imaging this?" ... Oh, and then you encounter airplane noise hundreds of times a day ... how do you keep track of all of this?
There is currently no effective way to make your voice heard, partly because it’s nearly impossible to get hard data on airplane noise at your home. If you had objective data, you would have a fighting chance... now you do!
Introducing NOISY - your new personal assistant in the fight for the right to have some peace & quiet.
NOISY captures all the data you need to track airplane noise over your home. Aside from what you can track yourself - date, time and location - you can additionally track noise levels, record the noise, combine your data with data from other affected people and visualize it online - automatically.
NOISY can also automatically file complaints for you, if your airport allows it. It can keep track of all your complaints. And if there are other NOISY's in your neighborhood, you can share your data with them and vice versa, revealing patterns and giving you a much louder voice.
You can display the collected data on the NOISY web dashboard, so you can watch NOISY track and analyze airplane noise, see where other airplane noise happens on a map, and monitor complaints being sent to the local airport authority. Airplane noise data can also be used when engaging with local representatives, policy-makers, PR agencies, and community organizations.
In other words, NOISY makes sure your voice is going to be heard. And the more people in your community get NOISY, the louder your voice will be.
So, when things get loud, get NOISY!
In 2007 the FAA decided to take advantage of new technology to help major airlines and airports deal with ever increasing air traffic. The goal was to create a 21st century air transportation system that could streamline departures and arrivals and squeeze more planes into way narrower flight paths. Major airports around the country started to implement these changes around 2014. The so-called NextGen air transportation systems implementation was a huge success in many ways by improving safety, efficiency and predictability... but then, neighborhoods got louder. Much louder. And airplane noise complaints went through the roof as shown below:
That's where NOISY comes in. We thought if airports can’t find solutions, well then, we’ll use the power of technology to make them think harder.
If an airplane flies over your house, NOISY automatically detects it, measures its noise intensity, and, with your permission, logs the time, date, location, and a flyover sound-byte. NOISY combines each noise event with publicly available data to identify the airplane and airline, and can even send an automated noise complaint to your participating local airport. If one hundred loud planes fly over your house, you can literally file one hundred complaints without lifting a finger.
The heart of NOISY is a custom designed sound sensor sticker (ear) and computing module (brain) hooked up to your home Wi-Fi network.
Now you can sit back, relax, and watch NOISY track and analyze those intrusive flyover airplanes, see on a map what happens elsewhere, and monitor complaints being sent to the local airport authority.
Let us share with you an example of what’s happening to the community of Hillside Drive in Chicago near O'Hare airport. We are committed to donating 15 NOISY's to the area, feel free to join our effort by pledging a sympathizer reward. :
Tae Hong Park, Ph. D. - CTO
Tae Hong is an Associate Professor at NYU, focusing on electro-acoustic and acoustic music, machine learning and computer-aided music analysis, research in multi-dimensional aspects of timbre, and audio digital signal processing.
Christian Staack - CEO
Christian is a Sales, Business Development and Operations Management Specialist with over 25 years of experience in scaling companies. In late 2013 he helped facilitate the nearly $600M sale of a game technology company to a large social mobile games company and the integration of its US employees into the merged companies workforce.
Johannes Moenius, Ph.D. - Advisor
Johannes teaches global business at the University of Redlands. He is the founding director of the Institute for Spatial Economic Analysis (ISEA) and holds the William R. and S. Sue Johnson Endowed Chair of Spatial Economic Analysis and Regional Planning.
Previously, he taught at the Kellogg School of Management and was a visiting scholar at Tokyo University. He studied Management Science at Bamberg University and Economics at the Technical University in Dresden, Queen’s University, Canada and UCSD, where he received his Ph.D.
He is a regular contributor to the media, such as LA Times, NPR, and PBS. He has presented his work in more than 150 talks at universities, conferences, and government institutions.
Arline Bronzaft, Ph.D - Advisor
Arline is a Professor Emerita of City University of New York, a consultant on noise impacts worldwide, and serves on Board of GrowNYC, overseeing its noise activities. She has conducted research on impacts of transit noise on classroom learning and on airport-related noise on health of residents, is one of five co-authors of Why Noise Matters (Earthscan 2011), has contributed writings on noise in books, scientific journals and the popular press, assisted in the 2007 revision of New York City’s noise code and was the recipient of the first American Psychological Association Citizen Psychologist Presidential Citation.
You can learn more about us at: https//:www.getnoisy.io
We are launching a Kickstarter campaign because we need your support to build a great product that can help people who live near airports find some peace and quiet.
We’ve put in years of R&D work. We’ve worked with, and learned from, a lot of great people. But we now need your help to take the final leap to transition from prototype to product. And we need your help to get the word out.
If you are part of, or know of organizations and communities fighting airplane noise pollution, share this initiative with them. We would love to get their feedback to better understand their specific situational needs.
Your ideas and feedback are vital to our product development efforts. As we prepare to enter production, we know that we can, together, build a world-class automated airplane noise tracking & reporting system. And when you receive your very own NOISY, we’ll be most eager to learn how we can make it better for you.
NOISY will be available for delivery in most countries around the world. Tracking links will be sent to all backers when their rewards start shipping. Shipping is free within the US. International shipping costs are limited to $25. Please note: For international shipments, there may be additional import fees upon delivery. For all shipping and handling details, please refer to the FAQs.
One of the certain things in life is that taxes are complicated. Here are the details:
California shipping address: We collect tax only for items shipped to addresses within NOISY’s home state of California. If your reward is shipped within the state, please add 7.75% to your pledge to cover taxes. We apologize for this inconvenience, but the Kickstarter pledge process unfortunately makes this part impossible to automate.
Shipping to other US states: We won’t reach the transaction or dollar threshold to affect sales tax for shipments to any other state or US addresses.
Shipments to the rest of the world: We won't be collecting import duties, VAT, GST, or other taxes that may be required by non-US jurisdictions. Items will be shipped with a customs declaration listing the items and the price paid during the campaign period, as well as a receipt attached to the exterior required by customs officials in many countries. Recipients will be responsible for any payments required for import in your country.
Assuming that you read through all the info above, let’s jump into what the subscriptions are all about:
NOISY can upload all the captured data to the cloud which are accessible through a standard web-browser to display all information, individually for you, or, if you create a group, together with other NOISYs. This enables us to display how airplane noise develops around airports, providing a powerful visual tool. The creation and maintenance of the website, its underlying architecture and the in and out flow of data costs money, which is covered by the revenue the subscription brings in.
Depending on the pledge level, you get a three-year subscription (Super Early Bird Supporter and Early Bird Supporter) or a two-year subscription (Kickstarter Exclusive) plan. After the end of the Kickstarter Campaign, there will be a one-year subscription plan included when acquiring a NOISY device.
Once the subscription ends, you can get additional subscriptions for $10/month at monthly billing cycles or $100/year for annual billing options.
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Let’s now dig a little deeper into the NOISY technology. We begin with a summary of the components that comprise the NOISY system as shown below. Please note that this is a prototype version which will be tweaked to make it more compact, usable, and aesthetically pleasing:
1. Computer Module
The Computer Module is currently a Raspberry Pi 3 single board computer. We won’t need much of its on-board I/O connectors and have turned the Ethernet port into an integrated sensor port to minimize clutter as shown above.
The computer module has an audio interface connected to a USB port and the on-board Ethernet port. We have modified it to power and connect the NOISY sound sensor sticker to the computer module.
Although the current prototype footprint is already small and compact, we plan to further simplify the layout and components.
The Computing Module stays safely indoors away from adverse weather conditions. Only the sound sensor is outdoors and is rugged enough to withstand harsh weather conditions including rain, wind, snow and ice.
2. Sound Sensor Sticker
Here are several versions of our NOISY Sound Sensor Sticker prototype:
Our sensor design allows for an extremely lightweight, thin and flat sensor. It sticks like Spiderman to the wall in NYC. Fun fact: The sensor is too flat for birds to chill on (sorry birdies), which is actually a problem for other outdoor sensors.
Although the sound sensor stickers are typically attached to windows, they can also be attached to walls and other flat, smooth surfaces. We will ship the sticker sensors in two versions:
- A heavy-duty 10 lbs. Velcro tape version allowing for easy attachment and detachment on any smooth surface and
- An adhesive tape version
The sensor is further treated with acoustic absorption materials to minimize unwanted vibrations from attached surfaces.
To meet our design and sound quality criteria we chose a Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) microphone. MEMS microphones, while very small, have recently found their way into the noise surveying space due to their performance features.
If you haven't fallen asleep yet, here are more details:
Type 1 microphone systems are categorized as accurate sound measurement devices for use in the lab and in the field. Type 2 mics are within specification limits for use in noise surveying in the US. NOISY falls into category 2.
The ANSI S1.4 standard states that Type 1 instrument have to be accurate within ± 1.5 dBA and Type 2 instruments within ± 2.3 dBA.
Calibrated MEMS microphone solutions show errors within ±2 dBA and most accurately operate above a 40 dBA level which is more than sufficient for flyover aircraft noise levels, since, in the US, allowable aircraft flyover noise level is 65 dBA DNL.
What is DNL you ask? Good question!
The short story is that it's a noise level metric used by the FAA representing permissible noise levels around airports.
The slightly longer version is that it is a level that is modeled, rather than measured, from annual flight patterns. The maximum allowed level is 65 dBA DNL in the US and 55 dBA DNL in Europe. What does this mean? It means that a 90 dBA noise event followed by some quiet time is permissible. What? That cannot be true you say ... no, really.
The following video somewhat illustrates this idea:
Courtesy of The Pennsylvania State University's Noise Quest Project
3. Flat Cat 5 Cable
The “Flat Cat 5” (say that 10 times fast!), which snaps into NOISYs Ethernet Port, seamlessly connects the analog to digital converter to the sound sensor sticker providing both power and data lines.
By using a standard Cat 5 cable, we provide a simple, familiar, and elegant connection solution. Our Flat CAT 5 cable enables a safe and easy connection of the sound sensor sticker from the outside of a window to the computer module tucked away inside the home, where it is protected from the environment. The cable is so flat that it can fit into even the tightest spaces between window and frame. If you are unsure whether it fits, take a regular print paper, fold it a few times, so that you have around 8 layers of paper. If you can fit that in the space between your window and frame, you can fit this cable.
4. Power Adapter
Well, a power adapter is a power adapter is a power adapter. Ours is powerful enough to provide what little power NOISY needs, which is between 2 and 5 watts. This is less than a regular power saving LED light bulb for a standard household uses and will cost you in the US between 1 and 5 cents per day, depending on where you live and how much energy you use. It comes in several plug type versions, so we can ship worldwide.
That’s it guys, thanks for reading and please have a look at the next section, talking about how to install NOISY in your home.
Hi guys, here is a video (sorry, no voiceover) showing you how to install NOISY in your home:.
...and a text version explaining it below:
These are the components you need to install NOISY:
Let’s start by laying them all out where they are supposed to go, so we know that the length of the power cable and the length of the sensor connector cable are sufficient.
First, let’s attach the sensor on the outside of a window. To do that, you will need to find a window that you can open to fit our slim sound sensor sticker (and your hand) through!
Find a location so that the cable can comfortably connect to the computing device’s Ethernet port (which is actually an integrated audio and power connector), even when opening and closing the window. Then, peel off the protective film and attach it to the outside of to window.
As you can see the cable goes comfortably through the window frame when closed.
Then, connect the sensor cable to the computer module...
plug the power cord into the module...
and … voilà .
That’s it guys, thanks for reading and please have a look at the next section, talking about how to do the initial setup of NOISY.
The on-board Wi-Fi is used to access data stored in the computing module. Before you are able to send data to the cloud, however, you will have to create an account at www.getnoisy.io (The website is already live, but the registration page will only go live around the time we will ship NOISY) and connect NOISY to your Wi-Fi system. We will send you detailed "how to" instructions around the time when we ship NOISY to you.
We saved the best for last! Here is a video introducing you to the basics of the NOISY prototype dashboard:
...and a text version explaining it:
1. The Dashboard Main Globe interface
In the upper right side is the dashboard menu, as depicted below:
Let us start on the left side to explain what the controls are for:
The first 4 buttons on the left are the "Transport Controls" which enable you to explore noise data through (starting from the left) the "beginning", "rewind", "stop" and "play" buttons.
The "beginning" button goes to the start of the time and date when the NOISY sensor was first turned on, "rewind" takes you to a specific time and date in the past, "stop" stops the replay and "play" allows you to explore noise data as it is happening in real-time with a small amount of delay so that your home Wi-Fi is not overburdened.
To the right of the date/day/time display is the "bell" icon, which rings whenever there are notices from NOISY.
By clicking on “All Nodes” you get a list of all NOISY sensors that are out there and shared. Locations accuracy (longitude and latitude) is selectable for each user – one can share pinpoint location or have it shared within a set custom radius area, such as pinpoint, 500 yards, or 1 mile for example. These are adjustable in the preferences section that each user can customize.
On the two rightmost buttons, you can sign in or sign up.
2. 2D map visualization
In addition to the globe visualizer prototype, we also have a 2D map visualizer, a visualization design that people are most familiar with, as shown below.
The map has the usual zoom in/out and street view features. On top of the familiar 2D maps, we have overlaid a heatmap consisting of “nodes” that indicate the locations of the NOISY sensors and thus noise information.
There is a noise level visualizer window that pops up when you click on one of the blinking NOISY nodes as depicted below.
The dBA visualizer prototype shows four sub-visualizations:
- (1) LED noise level on the far left,
- (2) second-by-second top plot,
- (3) hour-by-hour visualization in the middle and
- (4) day-by-day plot at the bottom.
Once you are signed in, you can also manage your NOISY sensors as shown below:
By highlighting a sensor and then clicking on one of the controls at the bottom, you can (1) go to your sensor on the map, (2) add a new sensor, (3) edit an existing sensor (name, location, resetting, updating the software, etc.), and (4) delete it from your list.
3. Automatic Identification of Airplane Noise
The AI module detects whether the sound is an airplane or non-airplane sound, including background noise. We provide an overview in the video below:
4. Complaint Filing
User complaint filing is straightforward and depends on what each airport authority has set up. In general, NOISY takes care of the tedious form filling process that includes required data (e.g. name, email, address, date, time, airport information, etc.), optional data (operation type, comments, etc.), the address and aircraft noise data (name, email, time, location, levels, descriptions, etc.), which vary slightly from airport to airport. Our complaint interface allows for various options – (1) automatic online complaint filing (when feasible), (2) user confirmation before filing, and (3) manual filing. In (2), you can listen and verify the noise characteristics (e.g. dBA level) detected by NOISY before clicking on the submit button. The other two (1) automatic and (3) manual are as described – automatic reporting for aircraft noise that are above a user-definable setting (low, mid, high) and manual reporting by submitting a report filled out with data manually.
5. Audio Storage and Playback
The current design of the Airplane Sound Explorer allows you to explore the sound captured by NOISY through a standard web-browser. The graphic below shows four recordings of airplane noise, each showing the airplane noise level (green), the location where the audio is playing (red), the audio waveform (magenta), and RMS energy (black).
NOISY logs the audio on the Computing Module similar to a car dash camera used for automobiles. By default, 48 hours of total recording time will be stored after which the oldest recording will be deleted once your limit is reached.
The 48 hours is, however, quite a large buffer as NOISY only records when it senses aircraft sounds, which are typically anywhere between a few seconds to 20 seconds long. If we generously assume that an aircraft sound is 20 seconds long, you will have approximately 8640 instances stored on your Computing Module at any one point.
Note that the audio recordings are stored locally on your Computing Module and thus only accessibly by you. However, we will also provide options to share and/or backup your data in our NOISY cloud system. We believe that such evidential data will be necessary to gain an objective understanding of aircraft noise around your home.
6. Airplane Tracking
We will display airplane tracking data in the NOISY dashboard. While this is not yet implemented, it is straightforward to do so. All it takes is a license, which costs money, hence the Kickstarter Campaign.
That’s it guys, thanks for reading and we hope you will become a pledger and support us in our endeavor.
Risks and challenges
MANUFACTURING AND SUPPLY CHAIN
Dealing with hardware manufacturing is always a challenge and transitioning from prototype to mass production is probably even harder.
Fortunately, NOISY’s hardware has been developed to a point where it is ready for production. Additionally, the hardware (sensor, raspberry Pi, case, cable, power supply) are off the shelve products, which only need to be tweaked minimally.
The hardware is straightforward, allowing us to work with just a few suppliers. We already pre-selected suppliers, and, with your support, we will be able to start negotiations with them shortly after the project is funded.
Although we will work closely with the suppliers to ensure everything runs smoothly, unexpected delays in production and delivery are always a possibility. We promise to keep you informed every step of the way in the “Updates” section.
If NOISY proves to be very successful, we might need to ship in batches, but we can cross that bridge (and keep you informed about it) when the need arises.
Prototypes of the two software components “Data Analytics” and “Result Presentation” are up and running and are working well. We are currently working on improving the user interface to make the results more accessible, easier to understand, and adding features. We currently have a prototype design of what the web-interface will look like and have all use cases set up.
We have all the expertise to bring NOISY to life in house and don’t need to rely on finding external help.
- (30 days)