The use of helicopter rises discussion about environmental noise propagation especially when it operates in proximity of environmentally sensitive areas (ESAs) for an extended period because of its potential implications in wildlife behaviours. In order to support decisions on helicopter logging operation management in proximity of ESAs, this study focused on (i) analysing the noise spectrum of a light-lift helicopter during logging operations and on (ii) assessing the noise propagation in the surrounding environments. This study investigated a helicopter logging operation for wood fuel extraction in the eastern part of the Italian Alps. The potential disturbance area covered for the entire helicopter logging operation was evaluated by a specific GIS application according to hearing sensitivity of the most sensitive wildlife species in the study area (different strigiform species). The noise level at the ground appeared to be affected by the location regardless both the use of equivalent continuous sound pressures level dB(A) (LAeq) and the single-event level (SEL) noise metrics. The lowest values were recorded when the helicopter was flown over the sound meter level located under the forest canopy, while the highest was recorded when the helicopter was unhooking the loads at the landing. The GIS application highlighted the consistent of the exceeded noise area (weighted to strigiform hearing range and sensitivity) for the lower frequency bands (0.016–0.250 kHz). A more restricted exceeded noise area concerned instead the most sensitive frequency bands" for the strigiform (1–2 kHz).
|Titolo:||Assessment of noise level and noise propagation generated by light-lift helicopters in mountain natural environments|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|