Noise management in the port of Rotterdam


26augallday29Inter-Noise 2018, Chicago(All Day) Marriot Downtown Magnificent Mile, Chicago


Noise Zones

In the Netherlands, noise zones are established around all large industrial sites for protection of the urban environment. These noise zones enable checking whether current and future noise levels exceed permitted levels.
Managing and monitoring of noise zones is a complicated process. The situation on large industrial areas will change regularly due to urban planning, spatial developments and expanding companies.

In the Rotterdam harbour area alone there are 24 zoned industrial sites containing over 50.000 noise sources.
To support the process for managing noise zones on and around large industrial areas the Geomilieu-i2 system has been developed.


Geomilieu-i2 is an advanced decision support system for safeguarding zones and limit values for industrial noise on and around large industrial areas.

The system is developed in 2014 and 2015 by DGMR Software in The Netherlands and provided to the market in 2016 as SaaS (Software as a Service).

Geomilieu-i2 consists of 1 or more Windows PC Clients running the Geomilieu software with i2 Module and a Cloud i2 server with a PostgreSQL i2 Noise Database.

Geomilieu-i2 is being used by DCMR EPA in the Rotterdam harbour area. The business rules and user roles of the system are based on agreed procedures between the stakeholders Province of South Holland (provincial authority), the municipalities in the Rotterdam Metropolitan Region (local authorities), the Port of Rotterdam (industry) and DCMR (EPA).

Geomilieu is used by consultants, authorities, industries and universities. Next to the Dutch calculation standards the Geomilieu software also supports the ISO 9613 and CNOSSOS-EU calculation methods for noise. This makes the Geomilieu-i2 system applicable worldwide.

A model and B model

The main business rules of Geomilieu-i2 are based on the A and B model principle. The A model is the actual model with all the actual companies occupying lots within the industrial area. The B model is the control model. In the B model all lots are filled up with maximum sound power levels for certain types of industry. Both models contain the maximum permitted noise levels on ZIP points. The A model also contains the maximum permitted noise levels on VIP points.

A ZIP point is located around the industrial area and is used for checking the noise level of the complete industrial area as well as checking the contribution per lot. A company always occupies 1 or more lots.

A VIP point is located near a specific company and is used for checking the noise level of that company. All changes in the actual model need to be within the limits of the ZIPs. A change in a company need to be within the limit of the VIPs.

A and B model

Figure 1: A and B model in the i2 Noise Database

uccupied and empty lots

Figure 2: Empty lots and occupied lots on an industrial area

Checking in and checking out models

The procedure for changes in companies involve checking out existing models and checking in modified models. When a new company wants to occupy a lot it must provide a calculated model that shows that the change does not conflict with the ZIPs. The model required for this calculation is provided by the EPA to the consultant of the company by checking out a copy of the A model. This model contains all the calculation objects of the industrial area and ZIPs. In case of an existing company it also includes the sources of the company and the VIPs. The consultant then uses the standard off-the-shelf Geomilieu software and GUI to make the changes in the model.

As the ZIPs are always included in the model the consultant can check if the changes are within the limits of the ZIPs. In case of a new company the consultant can suggest new VIPs. Then he sends the modified model back to the EPA. The EPA then reviews the model. In case the model is correct and all modelling rules have been followed the EPA will check in the model. This then results in a new A model.

The procedures for checking out and checking in models are fully automated. In case of incorrect and therefore rejected models automated reports are generated explaining the inconsistencies. Part of the automated procedure is a full recalculation of the model using the most up to date data of the A model.

Checking in and checking out models

Figure 3: Checking in and checking out models

The Geomilieu-i2 GUI

Figure 4:The Geomilieu-i2 GUI

Overview of the Geomilieu-i2 client-server application

Figure 5: Overview of the Geomilieu-i2 client-server application

Want to know more?

For more information on Geomilieu-i2 please contact Erwin Hartog van Banda (, or fill out this form:

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