Hearing and Acoustics

Acoustical foam


Our research interests encompass the effects of noise and vibration on people, noise and vibration reduction and electro-acoustics. The results of our research have formed a basis for international (ISO) standards and regulations to limit occupational exposure to hand-transmitted vibration and to measure and assess sensory disorders in the hands. In recent years our efforts have been directed toward improving speech communication and situational awareness in adverse environments, and understanding the factors influencing hearing loss. Acoustics facilities including an anechoic chamber, a reverberation room and supporting laboratories, have been used to conduct studies of hearing function and communication.

Acoustics Laboratory

The Acoustics Laboratory shares 8,000 square feet of laboratory space with the the UConn Health Biodynamics Laboratory. The laboratory features a 9-foot-by-8-foot audiometric booth and an anechoic chamber that is 28 feet long, 19 feet wide and 17 feet high. The booth is single walled, with sound-absorbing walls and ceiling (and carpeted floor) and a window for observing subjects. The laboratory includes full electronics and machine shops for electronic circuit development and construction and mechanical fabrication. In the past five years, the laboratory has produced a custom-designed, proof-of-concept hearing protector with active control of environmental noise and enhancement of speech in a communication channel; an open-ear-canal-mold miniature probe microphone for monitoring sound pressure at the human eardrum; low-noise microphone preamplifiers; acoustic and electronic filters; a digital signal processor-based active noise controller; a digital signal processor for speech communication enhancement in noise; and a point source of sound for use in animal studies of aural distance perception.