Aircraft Noise

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Aviation – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 30th November 1966.

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Photo of Sir Frederick Burden Sir Frederick Burden , Gillingham 12:00 am, 30th November 1966

asked the Minister of Aviation what sum of money has been allocated for research aimed at reducing aircraft noise.

Photo of Mr Julian Snow Mr Julian Snow , Lichfield and Tamworth

£385,000 in this financial year.

Photo of Sir Frederick Burden Sir Frederick Burden , Gillingham

Can the hon. Gentleman give the House any information about whether any useful results are beginning to flow from this money, which will be welcomed in view of the growing concern among all parties, including the airlines, about noise and its effects upon the civil population?

Photo of Mr Julian Snow Mr Julian Snow , Lichfield and Tamworth

The new research facilities coming into operation now, which include an anechoic chamber at Farnborough and the new laboratory at Ansty, Coventry, for examining noise problems on large-scale compressors and intakes, are achieving some results. There is no real shortage of money, but there is a real shortage of ideas on this problem.

Photo of Mr Anthony Royle Mr Anthony Royle , Richmond (Surrey)

Can the hon. Gentleman tell us how that figure compares with previous years? Is it an increase in the money spent on research into these subjects in the year previous to 1965–66?

Photo of Mr Julian Snow Mr Julian Snow , Lichfield and Tamworth

It is in accordance with the scale of the new facilities which I have mentioned. I repeat that there is no real shortage of money for this very serious problem.

Photo of Mr Hector Hughes Mr Hector Hughes , Aberdeen North

Will the Minister say how this money is being allocated, to what kind of programme it is being directed, and what scientific methods are being used to ensure that noise over our cities and towns is diminished?

Photo of Mr Julian Snow Mr Julian Snow , Lichfield and Tamworth

I have mentioned the facilities for the theoretical research into the problem, but I make no secret of the fact that the problem is not yet beaten. There are various ideas, such as modifying the thrust nozzles of engines. However, this is a very complex matter to be answered by Question and Answer on the Floor of the House.

Photo of Mr Robert Carr Mr Robert Carr , Mitcham

Will the hon. Gentleman give a specific answer to the supplementary question asked by my hon. Friend the Member for Richmond, Surrey (Mr. A. Royle)? Is the amount of money being spent this year more or less than in previous years?

Photo of Mr Julian Snow Mr Julian Snow , Lichfield and Tamworth

I would like to have notice of that Question, but I will see that the right hon. Gentleman is informed.

Photo of Mr Anthony Royle Mr Anthony Royle , Richmond (Surrey)

In view of the unsatisfactory nature of the hon. Gentleman's reply, I give notice that I propose to raise the matter on the Adjournment at the earliest possible moment.

Photo of Mr Kenneth Lewis Mr Kenneth Lewis , Rutland and Stamford

asked the Minister of Aviation to what extent consideration is being given in the production of the Concord to the need for reducing aircraft noise.

Photo of Mr Fred Mulley Mr Fred Mulley , Sheffield Park

One of the Concord design objectives has been that noise on takeoff and landing should not exceed that of the present large subsonic jet aircraft. Sonic bang is a different problem, to which we are giving constant attention, but it cannot be alleviated to any significant extent by changes in the design of the aircraft.

Photo of Mr Kenneth Lewis Mr Kenneth Lewis , Rutland and Stamford

Is the Minister aware that there is a general belief that this is going to be a very noisy aircraft and that the supersonic boom will cause a great deal of trouble? Can he assure the House that really close attention is being given to it, because it could affect sales of the aircraft?

Photo of Mr Fred Mulley Mr Fred Mulley , Sheffield Park

We are concerned to keep the noise of take-off and landing down to the minimum. The Concord will climb rapidly and cruise at a very high altitude, which will minimise noise in the ordinary sense in which complaints are received, and a noise attenuator is being developed by S.N.E.C.M.A., which, if successful, should make a significant reduction in noise up to 5 decibels.