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Ultrasonic Doppler Sensor for Voice Activity Detection

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3 Author(s)
Kalgaonkar, K. ; Georgia Inst. of Technol., Atlanta ; Rongquiang Hu ; Raj, B.

This letter describes a robust voice activity detector using an ultrasonic Doppler sonar device. An ultrasonic beam is incident on the talker's face. Facial movements result in Doppler frequency shifts in the reflected signal that are sensed by an ultrasonic sensor. Speech-related facial movements result in identifiable patterns in the spectrum of the received signal that can be used to identify speech activity. These sensors are not affected by even high levels of ambient audio noise. Unlike most other non-acoustic sensors, the device need not be taped to a talker. A simple yet robust method of extracting the voice activity information from the ultrasonic Doppler signal is developed and presented in this letter. The algorithm is seen to be very effective and robust to noise, and it can be implemented in real time.

Published in:

Signal Processing Letters, IEEE  (Volume:14 ,  Issue: 10 )