The purpose of the present study was to analyse the arousing effects of noise on sleep inertia as a function of circadian placement of a one-hour nap. In a first experiment, we measured the effects of sleep inertia in a neutral acoustic environment after a one-hour nap placed either at 0100 or 0400 on response time during a spatial memory test. In a second experiment were analysed the effects of an intense continuous noise on sleep inertia. The results showed that noise produced a total abolition of sleep inertia after an early nap (0000 to 0100). This may be due to the arousing effect of noise; however, results are less clear after a late nap 0300 to 0400 as noise seems to be ineffective. This result is discussed in terms of either a function of time-of-day effect or of prior sleep intensity. Moreover, our data suggest a possible interaction of noise with partial sleep deprivation leading to a slight deleterious effect those subjects who did not sleep at all.