Investigation of a tuff stone church in Cappadocia via acoustical reconstruction
This study investigates the indoor acoustical characteristics of a Middle Byzantine masonry church in Cappadocia. The Bell Church is in partial ruins; therefore, archival data and the church’s remains are used for its acoustical reconstruction. The study aims to formulate a methodology for a realistic simulation of the church by testing the applicability of different approaches, including field and laboratory tests. By conducting qualitative and quantitative material tests, different tuff stone samples are examined from the region. Impedance tube tests are performed on the samples from Göreme and Ürgüp to document their sound absorption performances. Previous field tests on two sites in Cappadocia are also used to compare the sound absorption performance of tuff stones, supported by acoustical simulations. The texture, physical and chemical characteristics of the stones together with the measured sound absorption coefficient values are comparatively evaluated for selecting the most suitable material to be applied in the Bell Church simulations. The church was constructed in phases and underwent architectural modifications and additions over time. The indoor acoustical environment of the church is analyzed over objective acoustical parameters of EDT, T30, C50, C80, D50, and STI for its different phases with different architectural features and functional patterns. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.