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Computational Acoustics

Module MW2323

This Module is offered by Chair of Vibro-Acoustics of Vehicles and Machines (Prof. Marburg).

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Basic Information

MW2323 is a semester module in German or English language at Master’s level which is offered in summer semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • Catalogue of non-physics elective courses
Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
150 h 45 h 5 CP

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


The course provides basic knowledge of numerical methods, which are used in acoustics. It deals with the finite and the boundary element methods (FEM, BEM) and the specific problems of these methods in the context of exterior acoustic problems in the fluid-structure interaction and other special aspects of modeling. The module also gives practical aspects in order to develop a simple FEM or BEM program with Matlab.

Learning Outcome

After participating in the module Computational Acoustics, students are able to:

- understand the formulations of finite element method (FEM) and boundary element method (BEM) for the solution of acoustic problems and to outline the main steps on their own

- explain the basics of meshing and the methods of discretization

- describe and analyze specific problems of FEM and BEM regarding the application in acoustics

- designate the basic structure of a FEM program and to develop a tool in Matlab to solve an acoustic problem numerically



Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

Learning and Teaching Methods

In the lecture, training content is taught based on lectures and writings on the whiteboard as well as by using tablet PC and projector. The numerical fundamentals of FEM and BEM are derived and the power of the methods based on practical, acoustic problems is demonstrated. Intermediate steps such as results can be visualized by commercial or free software in order to support the understanding.
The exercise will be held as a computer lab with work in Matlab. Students will first receive an introduction to Matlab and are supported to gradually develop their own FEM program to solve an acoustic problem numerically. Progress is controlled in the form of homework, which is graded and part of the final grade of the module. Some basic functions for meshing and visualization of the results are provided to the students.


Presentation, PC and projector, panel painting and computer work


Will be announced in the lecture

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

The module examination consists of mid-term examinations and a written exam (90 min) or oral exam (20 min) (the decision will be made at the beginning of the semester and depends on the number of participants in this course).
In the exam (auxiliary media/tools are not allowed), the students demonstrate that they can name the basic equations of acoustics and that they can master the essential steps to solve acoustic tasks using FEM and BEM and that they are able to solve specific problems in the field. Homework in a computer-aided exercise serves as a mid-term (study achievement) in which students demonstrate that they can independently implement the learned steps to implement an FEM program in MATLAB and physically interpret the results.
In the case of a failed module examination, the overall grade can not be improved by mid-term services. Existing mid-term achievements can be taken into account when repeating a failed module exam at the next possible exam date.

Exam Repetition

There is a possibility to take the exam in the following semester.

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