4 Company Background Nacre AS was established as a spin-off company from SINTEF (the largest research organization in Norway) in year 2000. 50% of R&D are former SINTEF employees or researchers. Ongoing research project with Statoil and SINTEF – main focus is reduction of NIHL in the O&G industry. Nacre was acquired by Sperian Protection in 2007. Sperian was acquired by Honeywell (~130.000 employees) in 2010, which has now become the largest supplier of PPE worldwide.
5 Background QUIETPRO was launched in 2005 to the military market – approx 63 000 units sold to date globally. Moved our focus over to the industrial market the past three years. QP100Ex is developed in cooperation with Statoil. QUIETPRO Industrial (QPi) is used on all helidecks on Statoil’s installations in the North Sea with very positive feedback. QP100Ex is our second generation product and is specially adapted to the O&G industry.
8 Decibel scale The decibel scale is a logarithmic scale, not linear: If the sound energy doubles 83 dB the sound level increases with 3 dB 86 dB A small increase of decibel level 89 dB represents an enormous increase in sound energy and danger 92 dB
9 Noise induced hearing loss is the most common permanent and preventable occupational injury in the world. ~ WHO (World Health Organization)
11 QP100Ex QP100Ex is an ATEX certified intelligent hearing protection and communication system with voice- feedback menu system and integrated function for Personal Sound Exposure Monitoring.
12 Advantages An alarm is activated if sufficient attenuation has not been achieved upon start up. Ensures situational awareness and communication in noisy environments. Ensures continuous personal sound exposure monitoring and alarms the user if permissible exposure limit is close or reached. “In-ear solution” will not conflict with other types of PPE, such as glasses, helmets, etc.
13 Functionality Outer microphone: picks up surrounding sound which is presented to the ear within safe noise levels. Inner microphone: picks up the voice from the user through the ear drum, which is processed by the control unit and sent via radio to the receiver. Speaker: presents an optimal mix of surrounding sound and radio communication within safe sound levels to the ear, as well as processing ANR.
14 Protection Automatic protection of sounds above 83/85 dBA. In quiet surroundings it is like not wearing any hearing protection. Attenuation of impulse sounds to non-harmful levels ensures situational awareness at all times. Surrounding sound may be increased or decreased when needed, always within a safe level. Level Time
15 ANR (Active Noise Reduction) Attenuation: Unprotected ear (red) Passive attenuation (yellow) Passive and active attenuation (green)
16 QP100Ex Confirm o On/Off o Menu function Menu o Enter menu system o Cycle through menu system PTT button Volume buttons Charging connector o Li-Ion battery only Headset port o 16 pins Port 1 (one canal) o 12 pins
17 QP100Ex LEDs LED – Light Emiting Diodes Double Green pulse: - Action completed - Confirmation of menu selection Continuous Green - During keying of radio Yellow pulsating: - Fit check underway Red pulsating: - Fit check failed - Dose exceeding permitted exposure level Continuous Red: - Battery very low - Auto shutdown - Hardware error Indicator Lights
19 Automatic Radio Configuration Automatic detection of radio parameters - Memory chip mounted in the cable - Can store gain parameter settings for maximum 7 different radios Radio interface cables can be ‘hot swapped’ - While the control is powered on - Important for connecting / disconnecting PORT1 cables Multi-function cable - Cables that work with several radios will ‘advise’ user to select correct radio type. - Control Unit will remember selection
20 Dosimetry vs. Personal Sound Exposure Monitoring (PSEM)
21 What is Dosimetry? Dosimetry based on European regulations: - Represents a measure of energy: L Eq = Sound effect x time - The total energy exposure over time. - A work shift of 8 or 12 hours provides the same measure of energy (EU). 85dBA/8h 83dBA/12h (Statoil works with 80dBA/12h) 3dBA increase = double energy half the exposure time When the permissible exposure limit is reached it is advisable to have a long period of rest (>8 hrs) in a quiet environment.
22 Traditional Dosimetry How is traditional dosimetry measured? - The surrounding sound is measured. - The attenuation of the hearing protection is estimated. - A theoretical dosimetry is then calculated.
23 Traditional Dosimetry Testing Preventive activities are done AFTER a hearing damage is detected. 0 246810121416 Months How long time does it take before a hearing impaired employee receives training? “Best case scenario” per “Hearing Conservation Amendment” Audiometric test Retest Notification
24 QUIETPRO Sound Measurement How does QUIETPRO measure sound exposure? - Measure the sound energy behind the ear tip inside the ear canal. - No uncertainty when measuring attenuation. - Patent pending method (”the gliding window”)
25 LED Indicators ACTION Will be determined by the customers hearing programs. Potential actions on illumination of Red light and alarm sounding. - Stop working in the noisy environment and find work in a quiet location. - Report the incident to the supervisor Dose exceeding 100%: Voice message x 2 Wobble tone – acknowledge required (same approach as for ”poor fit” warning) Dose < 50% 50% < Dose < 95% 95% < Dose Potential to reconfigure these ’trigger’ levels for customer programs.
26 Using QUIETPRO PSEM To ‘reset’ or not ‘reset’ ………..? 1.QUIETPRO product is personal - System is retain and always used by the same worker - QUIETPRO will calculate sound exposure considering the previous 16 hour period. Data download not required Daily ‘manual’ reset no required Control Unit can be switched off and PSEM still works 2.QUIETPRO product is shared with others - PSEM needs to be ‘Reset’ at the beginning of the shift to avoid the ”remains” of the previous workers exposure. Keep your hands off its mine! It is good to share!
27 Field Data Example Blue: noise in ear canal Red: external noise Worker on helideck on oil rig
28 Field Data Example Blue: noise in ear canal Red: external noise 5dB gain Caused by increased hear through volume
29 Field Data Example Incoming radio Blue: noise in ear canal Red: external noise
30 Field Data Example ≈15dB Blue: noise in ear canal Red: external noise
31 Field Data Example ≈ 30dB Blue: noise in ear canal Red: external noise
32 Field Data Example ≈ 80dBA Blue: noise in ear canal Red: external noise
33 Field Data Example Blue: noise in ear canal Black: accumulated noise dose
35 Experiences Tested QP100Ex with Motorola GP340Ex in machine rooms, on helidecks and compressor area on different installations in the North Sea – pilot version. Useful experiences for optimization of our product – now in the final validation phase prior to commercial launch. Ongoing research project with Statoil where 100 units are being tested on two platforms - research data are gathered over several years.
36 Voice of Customer Extremely good attenuation User friendly menu system The users get a personal understanding of their own protection – feel confident that their ears are being protected Management get access to a useful HSE tool that have never been previously available – gives new possibilities Training and motivation is key!
37 Future Developments Continuous feedback from customers affect further optimization and product development Helideck functionality Organization of cables Computer program for download of PSEM data
39 Challenges NIHL is the most common occupational injury in the world but also the most preventable. Ear muffs may get affected by the use of other types of PPE, such as helmets, glasses etc. Radio communication may lead to hearing damage. Little understanding of the consequences of not wearing hearing protection correctly. Difficult to control the actual exposure level of workers – preventable activities start when hearing damage is detected.
40 QP100Ex Automatic fit check at start up guarantees approximately 20 dB attenuation. QP100Ex provides clear communication in different high noise environments. QP100Ex ensures situational awareness at all times. Training is essential in order to get the best out of our system – level of attenuation and communication quality.
41 QP100Ex Ensures continuous sound exposure monitoring and files data up to 16 days. Immediate alarm and voice feedback when the user is close to or has reached the permissible exposure limit. Provides the ability to start immediate effective measures to avoid NIHL.
42 Last but not least… NIHL is 100% permanent. But it’s also 100% preventable. Take good care of your hearing! You depend on it!