5th European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology

Rhodes, Greece
September 22-25, 1997

Real Time Measurements of the Vocal Tract Resonances During Speech

Julien Epps, Annette Dowd, John Smith, Joe Wolfe

School of Physics, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia

The formants of speech sounds are usually attributed to resonances of the vocal tract. Formant frequencies are usually estimated by inspection of spectrograms or by automated techniques such as linear prediction. In this paper we measure the frequencies of the first two resonances of the vocal tract directly, in real time, using acoustic impedance spectrometry. The vocal tract is excited by a carefully calibrated, broad band, acoustic current signal applied outside the lips while the subject is speaking. The sound pressure response is analysed to give the resonant frequencies. We compare this new method (Real- time Acoustic Vocal tract Excitation or RAVE) with linear prediction and we report the vocal tract resonances for eleven vowels of Australian English. We also report preliminary results of using feedback from vocal tract excitation as a speech trainer, and its effect on improving the pronunciation of foreign vowel sounds by monolingual anglophones.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Epps, Julien / Dowd, Annette / Smith, John / Wolfe, Joe (1997): "Real time measurements of the vocal tract resonances during speech", In EUROSPEECH-1997, 721-724.