On the Role of Oral Configurations in European Portuguese Nasal Vowels

Conceição Cunha, Samuel Silva, António Teixeira, Catarina Oliveira, Paula Martins, Arun A. Joseph, Jens Frahm

The characterisation of nasal vowels is not only a question of studying velar aperture. Recent work shows that oropharyngeal articulatory adjustments enhance the acoustics of nasal coupling or, at least, magnify differences between oral/nasal vowel congeners. Despite preliminary studies on the oral configurations of nasal vowels, for European Portuguese, a quantitative analysis is missing, particularly one to be applied systematically to a desirably large number of speakers. The main objective of this study is to adapt and extend previous methodological advances for the analysis of MRI data to further investigate: how velar changes affect oral configurations; the changes to the articulators and constrictions when compared with oral counterparts; and the closest oral counterpart. High framerate RT-MRI images (50fps) are automatically processed to extract the vocal tract contours and the position/configuration for the different articulators. These data are processed by evolving a quantitative articulatory analysis framework, previously proposed by the authors, extended to include information regarding constrictions (degree and place) and nasal port. For this study, while the analysis of data for more speakers is ongoing, we considered a set of two EP native speakers and addressed the study of oral and nasal vowels mainly in the context of stop consonants.

 DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2232

Cite as: Cunha, C., Silva, S., Teixeira, A., Oliveira, C., Martins, P., Joseph, A.A., Frahm, J. (2019) On the Role of Oral Configurations in European Portuguese Nasal Vowels. Proc. Interspeech 2019, 3332-3336, DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2232.

  author={Conceição Cunha and Samuel Silva and António Teixeira and Catarina Oliveira and Paula Martins and Arun A. Joseph and Jens Frahm},
  title={{On the Role of Oral Configurations in European Portuguese Nasal Vowels}},
  booktitle={Proc. Interspeech 2019},