Research Unit 1732 Individualized Hearing Acoustics

Project F - Ear canal presentation

Active sound field control for sound reproduction in open ear canals

When in-ear headphones or open-fit hearing aids are used in noisy situations (e.g., in trains or airplanes), ambient noise enters the ear canal and typically comprimises the speech understanding of the hearing aid user or the music experience of the normal-hearing listener. In the case of open-fit hearing aids, the acoustic coupling between the hearing aid receiver and microphones in addition causes annoying acoustic feedback. Due to the individual differences in the anatomy of the ear canal, these phenomena vary from person to person and hence personalized strategies for solving these problems are required.

The aim of this project is to investigate the basic principles of active sound field control in open ear canals and to develop individualized open-fit hearing aid prototypes that are able to overcome the limitations of current open-fit hearing aid systems with regard to noise reduction and acoustic feedback cancellation.