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Acoustic barriers can be required in any situation in which noise pollution is a problem. This may be an interior scenario such as soundproofing a room in which excessive noise is created, i.e.; a recording studio, or it may be an exterior scenario such as a roadside.
Acoustic barriers can be either sound absorbent or sound isolating (reflective). Sound isolation involves generally stiff, heavy material which literally stops sound from passing through it, due to massed consistency. Sound absorption involves porous, open celled material, and stops sound by soaking it up. Sound isolation is the most effective of the two options when attempting to stifle noise pollution, however in some cases they can be employed together ensuring maximum protection.