Date of Graduation

Spring 2018

Document Type

Honors Research Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science


Mechanical Engineering - Cooperative Education

Research Sponsor

Dr. S. Graham Kelly

First Reader

Dr. Scott Sawyer

Second Reader



Typical industry-ready impedance tube systems for measuring sound absorption cost between $20,000 and $60,000. The scope of this project was to explore an industrial impedance tube and its functions as well as iteratively reduce the cost of each component of the system to its lowest possible conclusion without severely sacrificing quality of data acquisition. Replacement of the hardware and software with “off-the-shelf” alternatives and custom-made components can reduce the overall cost by as much as two orders of magnitude in order to be used in the education sector, mainly high schools. We find that the designed tube and driver replacements resulted in less than optimal performance as compared to an industrial system. We also explore alternatives to the proprietary software used for our application and improvements to the originally designed system.


For comments and expanded research on the software component of this project, please visit Appendix B.