The International Congress on Ultrasonics'2011 held in Gda?sk, Poland was the third one (after Viena'2007, Austria and Santiago'2009, Chile) over the world meeting of the ultrasonics community, continuing a long tradition of Ultrasonics International Conferences (organized every second year since 1963 to 2005), as well as World Congresses on Ultrasonics (organized every second year since 1995 to 2005). Last 6 years experience of foundation of ICU congresses have shown a real progress in global integration process of the ultrasonics community and provided an excellent platform for the professional knowledge, exchange among scientists and engineers from academic and industrial centers as well as from other institutions and places of ultrasonics studies and applications. Ultrasonics as multi-disciplinary field covers a great number of topics from fundamental physical aspects through chemical, biological, medical, material inspections and others branches to many applications. All contributions of topics of the field of ultrasonics were presented during the ICU'2011 in Gdańsk, and the meeting provided a valuable and unique opportunity for participants to exchange their achievements and experience as well as to enlarge their international contacts on the field.
The implemented online urban noise pollution monitoring system is presented with regard to its conceptual assumptions and technical realization. A concept of the noise source parameters dynamic assessment is introduced. The idea of noise modeling, based on noise emission characteristics and emission simulations, was developed and practically utilized in the system. Furthermore, the working system architecture and the data acquisition scheme are described. The method for increasing the speed of noise map calculation employing a supercomputer is explained. The practical implementation of noise maps generation and visualization system is presented, together with introduced improvements in the domain of continuous noise monitoring and acoustic maps creation. Some results of tests performed using the system prototype are shown. The main focus is put on assessing the efficiency of the acoustic maps created with the discussed system, in comparison to results obtained with traditional methods.
Reed woodwind instruments differ in both their geometry (mainly cylindrical or mainly conical) and their excitation mechanism (single or double reed). How much of the resulting sound is due to the single/double reed, and how much to the geometry of the instrument? Measurements done by Almeida et al. (J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 121, 1, 536-546, 2007) show that the flow vs pressure characteristic curve of an oboe reed is not that different from that of a clarinet reed, the only difference probably being due to pressure recovery inside the conical staple. Is it possible to make a single reed mouthpiece for an oboe, while keeping the conical staple, that would still give the oboe its characteristic sound? To find it out, a mouthpiece with the following characteristics was made: A standard clarinet Bb reed can be attached to it, its volume is approximately that of the missing part of the instrument cone, and a standard French oboe staple can be inserted to it, so that it can be inserted in the usual way in any french oboe. In this paper, the first prototype of the mouthpiece is shown. Also, a sound comparison of the oboe sounds played with this mouthpiece and a standard double reed by a professional player is presented.
We are exploring the relationship between accents and expression in piano performance. Accents are local events that attract a listener's attention and are either evident from the score (immanent) or added by the performer (performed). Immanent accents are associated with grouping (phrasing), metre, melody and harmony. In piano music, performed accents involve changes in timing, dynamics, articulation, and pedalling; they vary in amplitude, form, and duration. We analyzed the first eight bars of Chopin Prelude op. 28 n. 6. In a separate study, music theorists had marked grouping, melodic and harmonic accents on the score and estimated the importance (salience) of each. Here, we mathematically modeled timing and dynamics in the prelude in two ways using Director Musices (DM) - a software package for automatic rendering of expressive performance. The first rendering focused on phrasing following existing and tested procedures in DM. The second focused on accents - timing and dynamics in the vicinity of the accents identified by the theorists. In an informal listening test, 10 out of 12 participants (5 of 6 musicians and 5 of 6 non-musicians) preferred the accent-based formulation, and several stated that it had more variation of timing and dynamics from one phrase to the next.
This paper has two distinct parts. Section 1 includes general discussion of the phenomenon of "absolute pitch" (AP), and presentation of various concepts concerning definitions of "full", "partial" and "pseudo" AP. Sections 2-4 include presentation of the experiment concerning frequency range in which absolute pitch appears, and discussion of the experimental results. The experiment was performed with participation of 9 AP experts selected from the population of 250 music students as best scoring in the pitch-naming piano-tone screening tests. Each subject had to recognize chromas of 108 pure tones representing the chromatic musical scale of nine octaves from E0 to D#9. The series of 108 tones was presented to each subject 60 times in random order, diotically, with loudness level about 65 phon. Percentage of correct recognitions (PC) for each tone was computed. The frequency range for the existence of absolute pitch in pure tones, perceived by sensitive AP possessors stretches usually over 5 octaves from about 130.6 Hz (C3) to about 3.951 Hz (B7). However, it was noted that in a single case, the upper boundary of AP was 9.397 Hz (D9). The split-halves method was applied to estimate the reliability of the obtained results.
In the paper, various approaches to automatic music audio summarization are discussed. The project described in detail, is the realization of a method for extracting a music thumbnail - a fragment of continuous music of a given duration time that is most similar to the entire music piece. The results of subjective assessment of the thumbnail choice are presented, where four parameters have been taken into account: clarity (representation of the essence of the piece of music), conciseness (the motifs are not repeated in the summary), coherence of music structure, and overall quality of summary usefulness.
The present study was carried out to determine whether recorded musical tones played at various pitches on a clarinet, a flute, an oboe, and a trumpet are perceived as being equal in loudness when presented to listeners at the same A-weighted level. This psychophysical investigation showed systematic effects of both instrument type and pitch that could be related to spectral properties of the sounds under consideration. Level adjustments that were needed to equalize loudness well exceeded typical values of JNDs for signal level, thus confirming the insufficiency of A-weighting as a loudness predictor for musical sounds. Consequently, the use of elaborate computational prediction is stressed, in view of the necessity for thorough investigation of factors affecting the perception of loudness of musical sounds.
This study examined whether differences in reverberation time (RT) between typical sound field test rooms used in audiology clinics have an effect on speech recognition in multi-talker environments. Separate groups of participants listened to target speech sentences presented simultaneously with 0-to-3 competing sentences through four spatially-separated loudspeakers in two sound field test rooms having RT = 0:6 sec (Site 1: N = 16) and RT = 0:4 sec (Site 2: N = 12). Speech recognition scores (SRSs) for the Synchronized Sentence Set (S3) test and subjective estimates of perceived task difficulty were recorded. Obtained results indicate that the change in room RT from 0.4 to 0.6 sec did not significantly influence SRSs in quiet or in the presence of one competing sentence. However, this small change in RT affected SRSs when 2 and 3 competing sentences were present, resulting in mean SRSs that were about 8-10% better in the room with RT = 0:4 sec. Perceived task difficulty ratings increased as the complexity of the task increased, with average ratings similar across test sites for each level of sentence competition. These results suggest that site-specific normative data must be collected for sound field rooms if clinicians would like to use two or more directional speech maskers during routine sound field testing.
A low-dimensional physical model of small-amplitude oscillations of the vocal folds is proposed here. The model is a simplified version of the body-cover one in which mucosal surface wave propagation has been approximated by the seesaw-like oscillation of the vocal fold about its fulcrum point whose position is adjustable in both the horizontal and vertical directions. This approach works for 180 degree phase difference between the glottal entry and exit displacements. The fulcrum point position has a significant role in determining the shape of the glottal flow. The vertical position of the fulcrum point determines the amplitude of the glottal exit displacement, while its horizontal position governs the shape and amplitude of the glottal flow. An increment in its horizontal position leads to an increase in the amplitude of the glottal flow and the time period of the opening and closing phases, as well as a decrease in the time period of the closed phase. The proposed model is validated by comparing its results with the low-dimensional mucosal surface wave propagation model.
The parameters of sigma-delta audio DAC depend mainly on digital sigma-delta modulator's features, especially on its noise transfer function (NTF). Many methods of design and optimization of the loop filter's coefficients in sigma-delta modulators have been proposed so far. These methods enable the designer to get suitable noise transfer functions for specific application. This paper reviews NTF design and optimization methods which are particularly useful in audio applications.
A phoneme segmentation method based on the analysis of discrete wavelet transform spectra is described. The localization of phoneme boundaries is particularly useful in speech recognition. It enables one to use more accurate acoustic models since the length of phonemes provide more information for parametrization. Our method relies on the values of power envelopes and their first derivatives for six frequency subbands. Specific scenarios that are typical for phoneme boundaries are searched for. Discrete times with such events are noted and graded using a distribution-like event function, which represent the change of the energy distribution in the frequency domain. The exact definition of this method is described in the paper. The final decision on localization of boundaries is taken by analysis of the event function. Boundaries are, therefore, extracted using information from all subbands. The method was developed on a small set of Polish hand segmented words and tested on another large corpus containing 16 425 utterances. A recall and precision measure specifically designed to measure the quality of speech segmentation was adapted by using fuzzy sets. From this, results with F-score equal to 72.49% were obtained.
The subject presented in this paper refers to measurements and assessment of the corrected sound pressure level values (noise) occurring around a medium-power transformer. The paper presents the values of noise accompanying the operation of the power object before and after its modernization, which consisted in repeated core pressing and replacement of the cooling system. The main aim of the research work was the assessment of the influence of the repair work on the noise level emitted into the environment.
In this study, it was achieved by using the method of impulse noise to detect internal or surface cracks that can occur in the production of ceramic plates. Ceramic materials are often used in the industry, especially as kitchenware and in areas such as the construction sector. Many different methods are used in the quality assurance processes of ceramic materials. In this study, the impact noise method was examined. This method is a test technique that was not used in applications. The method is presented as an examination technique based on whether there is a deformation on the material according to the sound coming from it as a result of a plastic bit hammer impact on the ceramic material. The application of the study was performed on plates made of ceramic materials. Here, it was made with the same type of model plates manufactured from the same material. The noise that would occur as a result of the impact applied on a point determined on the materials to be tested has been examined by the method of time-frequency analysis. The method applied gives pretty good results for distinguishing ceramic plates in good condition from those which are cracked.
Within the boundaries of many municipal urbanized areas, large grounds are found, from which the noise is emitted into the environment, surrounded by the regions liable to acoustic protection. Such a condition generates many problems including also those ones related to the lack of the fulfillment of requirements concerning environmental protection against excessive noise. Therefore the aim of vital importance is the proper management of municipal grounds, both in view of the investment in policy steering, especially of new investments, and in the case of activities aimed at maintaining or restoring (revitalizing) the acoustic properties on the grounds that have already been used or simply degraded before. Keeping the scale of the problem in mind, such activities must be carried on not temporarily, but must have a systemic character. The structure of every system is characterized by the appropriate relationships among their elements and the properties of those relationships. In case of the noise management system, the elements of such a system are the activities connected with the management itself that are the actions which rely on specifying the aims and causing their realization within the scope and on the grounds subject to the managing entity. The superior aim of such activities should be to supply the tools for improvement of management and in the process of taking decisions that relate to investments including the of optimization conditions and maintenance of socio-economic importance of such areas.
Vibrating plates have been recently used for a number of active noise control applications. They are resistant to difficult environmental conditions including dust, humidity, and even precipitation. However, their properties significantly depend on temperature. The plate temperature changes, caused by ambient temperature changes or plate heating due to internal friction, result in varying response of the plate, and may make it significantly different than response of a fixed model. Such mismatch may deteriorate performance of an active noise control system or even lead to divergence of a model-based adaptation algorithm. In this paper effects of vibrating plate temperature variation on a feedforward adaptive active noise reduction system with the multichannel Filtered-reference LMS algorithm are examined. For that purpose, a thin aluminum plate is excited with multiple Macro-Fiber Composite actuators. The plate temperature is forced by a set of Peltier cells, what allows for both cooling and heating the plate. The noise is generated at one side of the plate, and a major part of it is transmitted through the plate. The goal of the control system is to reduce sound pressure level at a specified area on the other side of the plate. To guarantee successful operation of the control system in face of plate temperature variation, a gain-scheduling scheme is proposed to support the Filtered-reference LMS algorithm.
The possibility of acoustic wave propagation in optical waveguides creates new prospects for simultaneous transmission of laser beams and ultrasonic waves. Combined laser-ultrasonic technology could be useful in e.g. surgical treatment. The article presents the results of experimental studies of transmission of ultrasonic wave in optical fibres, the core of which is doped by 7.5% of TiO2, using a sandwich-type transducer. It also presents amplitude characteristics of an ultrasonic signal propagated in the optical fibre. Authors studied the effect which the length of the fibre has on the achieved output signal amplitudes. They presented the relation of the output signal amplitude from a capacitive sensor to the power applied to the sandwich-type transducer. The obtained results were compared with the results produced when using an optical fibre with a core doped by 3% of GeO2, in order to select optical fibre suitable for simultaneous transmission of ultrasonic waves and laser rays.
Random nature of corona processes in UHV power lines and the accompanying noise is the reason that in practice the best determination of acoustic parameters, necessary for the noise evaluation, is obtained from the continuous monitoring procedure. However because of considerable fluctuations (both the useful signal part and the interfering components), careful selection of monitored parameters is necessary to enable a possibility of automatic determination of the parameters that are required for long-term evaluation of corona noise. In the present work a practical realization is shown for estimation of corona noise parameters, based on the data obtained from continuous monitoring stations, making use of the statistical spectra measurement and characteristic features of corona process acoustic signal. Selected results are presented from continuous monitoring of corona noise generated at a 400 kV power line, with special attention focused on definitions of the measured quantities, which enable automatic estimation of the basic factors required for noise evaluation. Accompanying monitoring of environmental conditions, including humidity, precipitation intensity and fog density, that are well correlated with the corona process intensity, which might definitely increase the filtration efficiency of environmental disturbances and on the other hand, it enables verification of calculation methods applied to corona noise. The paper also contains a description of practical approach to selection signal parameters of corona noise in continuous monitoring stations.
The modern cabin of heavy duty machines have to fulfil a number of requirements which deal with operators' work comfort. More and more often, the vibroacoustic and thermal comforts decide about the cabin quality. This paper presents principles of acoustic and thermal calculations as well as their use in combined assessment.
The Neumann boundary value problem for the Helmholtz equation within the quarter-space has been considered in this paper. The Green function has been used to find the acoustic pressure amplitude as the approximation valid within the Fraun-hoffer's zone for some time-harmonic steady state processes. The low fluid loading has been assumed and the acoustic attenuation has been neglected. It has also been assumed that the vibration velocity of the acoustic particles is small as compared with the sound velocity in the gaseous medium.
Traditionally I invite you to acquaint with the preliminary list of lectures and some abstracts of lectures submitted for presentation in the 39th Winter School on Vibroacoustical Hazards Suppressions. This national School, organized by Upper Silesian Division of the Polish Acoustical Society and Institute of Physics at the Silesian University of Technology, is planned this year at the turn of February and March 2011. This conference is organized in different places of Silesian Beskidy Mountains, but this year will be again organized in Szczyrk.
I have a great pleasure to inform the "AA" Readers that the 40th Winter School on Wave and Quantum Acoustics, organized by Upper Silesian Division of the Polish Acoustical Society and Institute of Physics - Scientific-Didactics Center at Silesian University of Technology, is planned at the turn of February and March 2011 in beautiful scenery of Silesian Beskidy Mountains. Many times it was organized in Wisła, Skoczów, Szczyrk and Korbielów, and this year it will be organized again in Szczyrk.
Independent Component Analysis (ICA) can be used for single channel audio separation, if a mixed signal is transformed into time-frequency domain and the resulting matrix of magnitude coefficients is processed by ICA. Previous works used only frequency (spectral) vectors and Kullback-Leibler distance measure for this task. New decomposition bases are proposed: time vectors and time-frequency components. The applicability of several different measures of distance of components are analysed. An algorithm for clustering of components is presented. It was tested on mixes of two and three sounds. The perceptual quality of separation obtained with the measures of distance proposed was evaluated by listening tests, indicating "beta" and "correlation" measures as the most appropriate. The "Euclidean" distance is shown to be appropriate for sounds with varying amplitudes. The perceptual effect of the amount of variance used was also evaluated.
The work presents a comparison of some sound attributes perceived at a multichannel and stereo playback of musical recordings. The width of the virtual source, coherence impression, total size of sound scene, general quality and balance were the subjects of interest after the format reduction in accordance with the ITU recommendation. The results showed that evaluation of these attributes depends on the way the original audiosphere has been created in the surround system, for example, for a narrow virtual source the mix-down process causes only a small change in its size but for a broad source the observed degradation is significant. In addition, different ways of conversion from the multichannel to stereo format have been tested for compatibility.
Whenever the recording engineer uses stereo microphone techniques, he/she has to consider a recording angle resulting from the positioning of microphones relative to sound sources, besides other acoustic factors. The recording angle, the width of a captured acoustic scene and the properties of a particular microphone technique are closely related. We propose a decision supporting method, based on the mapping of the actual position of a sound source to its position in the reproduced acoustic scene. This research resulted in a set of localisation curves characterising four most popular stereo microphone techniques. The curves were obtained by two methods: calculation, based on appropriate engineering formulae, and experiment consisting in the recording of sources and estimation of the perceived position in listening tests. The analysis of curves brings several conclusions important in the recording practice.
The aim of this paper is to describe the process of choosing the best surround microphone technique for recording of choir with an instrumental ensemble. First, examples of multichannel microphone techniques including those used in the recording are described. Then, the assumptions and details of music recording in Radio Gdansk Studio are provided as well as the process of mixing of the multichannel recording. The extensive subjective tests were performed employing a group of sound engineers and students in order to find the most preferable recording techniques. Because the final recording is based on the mix of "direct/ambient" and "direct-sound all-around" approaches, a subjective quality evaluation was conducted and on this basis the best rated multichannel techniques were chosen. The results show that listeners might consider different factors when choosing the best rated multichannel techniques in separate tasks, as different systems were chosen in the two tests.