REAL-TIME, DIGITAL SIGNAL PROCESSING FOR HEARING AIDS

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 13770
Amount: $50,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 1990
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
430 10th St Nw, Atlanta, GA, 30318
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Janet C Rutledge
 (404) 894-3575
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
SENSORINEURAL HEARING IMPAIRMENTS, IN GENERAL, AND RECRUITMENT OF LOUDNESS, IN PARTICULAR, HAVE NOT BEEN SUCCESSFULLY TREATED WITH CURRENTLY AVAILABLE HEARING AIDS. TO DATE, THESE AIDS MOSTLY AMPLIFY SOUNDS, OFTEN ON A FREQUENCY-DEPENDENT BASIS. ANALOG WIDEBAND AND MULTIBAND AIDS EMPLOYING AMPLITUDE COMPRESSION HAVE MET LIMITED SUCCESS. DIGITAL SIGNAL PROCESSING PROVIDES GREATER FLEXIBILITY AND LESS DISTORTION IN COMPENSATING FOR HEARING IMPAIRMENTS. THE GOAL OF THIS RESEARCH IS TO DEVELOP A DIGITAL HEARING AID DEVICE THAT INCORPORATES STATE-OF-THE-ART DIGITAL SIGNALPROCESSING. THE SPECIFIC AIM OF PHASE I IS TO DEVELOP A REAL-TIME MICROPROCESSOR IMPLEMENTATION OF A SYSTEM DESIGNED TO COMPENSATE FOR RECRUITMENT OF LOUDNESS IN SENSORINEURAL HEARING LOSSES. THE SINUSOIDAL MODEL OF SPEECH IS USED IN A TIME-VARYING, FREQUENCY-DEPENDENT SYSTEM THAT INCORPORATESA MODEL OF THE INTERACTION OF SINUSOIDAL MASKERS IN BOTH NORMAL-HEARING AND HEARING-IMPAIRED INDIVIDUALS. THE PROCESSING APPROXIMATELY COMPENSATES FOR BOTH THE IMPAIRED SUBJECT'S REDUCED DYNAMIC RANGE OF HEARING AND THE ACCOMPANYING ABNORMAL SPREAD OF MASKING WHILE MAINTAINING THE OVERALL SPECTRAL RELATIONSHIPS. WITH THE AID OF A REAL-TIME SYSTEM, RESEARCH CAN BE PERFORMED TO STUDY THE FEASIBILITY OF USING THIS COMPENSATION SYSTEM IN A COMMERCIALLY AVAILABLE HEARING AID DEVICE.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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