He curbs aural assault with trash!

What does it take to build a sound proof room using trash? An idea, over 6,500 waste tetra packs, loads of sawdust, a youth campaign, scientific research and creative genius!

Aditya Bali, a first year engineering student who recently passed out of St. Mary’s School, Dwarka, has been awarded one of the four Influence Fellowships by non-profit organisation Swechha for his brilliant green idea – ‘Tetra Traps Timbre - Constructive reuse of tetra packs.’

After extensive research and testing, Aditya’s dream project became a reality and he successfully soundproofed the music room and the printing press room at St. Mary’s School Dwarka using just tetra packs. He gave the project the shape of a campaign, building a huge team of student volunteers and organising waste collection drives in several schools and neighbourhoods. The noise levels have gone down remarkably. Students and teachers at the school are proud of Aditya’s brilliant idea and efforts.
The project was completed in four months and was executed in five phases with activities ranging from environmental awareness drives and collection of tetra packs to cleaning waste and packing the tetra packs with saw dust. Aditya Bali, the young green fellow says, “Collection of the material and mobilisation of resources was the main challenge that I faced. There were 50-80 people including vendors, students and school authorities who were directly involved in the project. It wouldn’t have been possible without their support.” A total of 7,500 tetra packs were collected from five schools in Dwarka of which 6,750 were used.

Aditya used a very interesting process to build the soundproof room. The tetra packs were first cleaned with water. They were then packed with saw dust and neem leaves before being fixed on the walls along with empty egg crates to form an irregular surface.  Sawdust, with its cellulosic quality is known to be a natural sound absorbent. It has maximum air gaps and air being a sound insulator has a synergetic effect. Sawdust is a health and environmental menace that causes respiratory diseases and hence was an excellent choice as material for the project. Neem, being a natural insecticide, was used as packaging material to prevent termite infestation in the sawdust. The software ‘Reaper Daw’ was used to measure the noise levels before and after the sounproofing and, as expected, it showed excellent results.

The project idea was one amongst the 111 science projects shortlisted to be showcased in the IRIS (Initiative for Research and Innovation in Science) National Fair 2012. Aditya aspires to build this project into an entrepreneurship venture making soundproofing using trash, as a viable option for factories, conference rooms, jamming rooms and performing arts spaces. 

Aditya received a fellowship of Rs 50,000 from Swechha - a Delhi-based NGO which works specifically with the youth --to execute the project as a part of their Influence Youth Leadership Program. Through Influence, Swechha creates a platform for young people to get constructively involved in working on issues of development. Promoting green entrepreneurship amongst young people is a key focus of the project.

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