Case Studies

Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD) Field Testing

Noise Impact of Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD)

Location: Canadian Forces Base Borden, Ontario, Canada
Client:  Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services

Long-Range Acoustic Devices (LRADs) are a type of acoustic hailing device (AHD) that provide communication and warning functions using directed acoustic energy. Multiple models are currently available with common features including two functional settings. The “voice” function acts as a powerful loudspeaker or megaphone while the “alert” function emits a high decibel, narrow frequency, focused set of sound waves.

HGC Engineering was retained to conduct acoustical testing of particular models of the LRAD to establish noise exposure levels from these devices to enable the assessment of hearing impacts on bystanders and operators and the identification of safe operating parameters to assist in their use.

Testing was conducted in a free field (large open space) environment at Canadian Forces Base Borden.  The measurement results were used as input to a computer model of the sound produced by the devices, which was then used to simulate specific crowd management operational policing scenarios.

The information was provided to the ministry to assist them in developing operating parameters and risk mitigation practices.

You can view the final report released by the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services that incorporated our findings here.


Acoustical Engineering Services Included:

  • Noise Baseline Tests
  • Sound Propagation and Modeling
  • Device Qualification
  • Occupational Heath and Safety (OHS) Determinations
  • Procedure Definition

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