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Spin out acquisition by Merford will accelerate impact of industrial noise control technology

Sonobex, the multi-award-winning spin out from Loughborough University’s physics research base, has been acquired by Merford UK, a leading specialist in industrial noise control. This secures the family company not only more 'brain power', but also brings a revolutionary technology in house: capable of reducing noise using by innovative, novel methods.

Since incorporation in 2013, the Sonobex team of three Loughborough research graduates and an audio engineer has worked on developing innovative technologies and solutions within the noise control sector. Supported by a number of awards from the UK’s Higher Education Innovation Fund and the Royal Academy of Engineering, the team has patented acoustic panel technology, SonoTEC®.

The technology is used to control the hum of large transformers in heavy industry, which are normally hard to mute, it can also be deployed for other uses, such as noise barriers on highways or silencing of industrial pumps, compressors, generators and turbines.

Unlike existing techniques, which rely on solid enclosures to block the sound, the nature of the SonoTEC® system ensures that sound ‘cancels' itself. As a result, light solutions can also be developed which also allow passive ventilation – a significant benefit for machine enclosures.

Joost Vertooren, co-director of Merford, calls the acquisition of Sonobex “the most progressive” in the company's history: “We have made several acquisitions, but these concerned often manufacturing companies or increasing our market share. This acquisition is purely to enhance our research and development function.”

Dr Daniel Elford, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Sonobex says: “There is a great synergy between Sonobex and Merford with a shared focus on innovation and product development. We have exciting times ahead.”

Professor Tracy Bhamra, Loughborough University’s Pro-Vice Chancellor for Enterprise adds: “Merford is the perfect partner for Sonobex to take its proprietary noise reduction solution, underpinned by world-class research, to accelerate routes to market and improve the climate of the living and working environment.”

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