Physical model of the vocal tract with flexible velum

Technical Report of IEICE Japan, Vol. SP2008-103, pp. 143-148, 2008 (in Japanese)

Physical model of the vocal tract with flexible velum

T. Arai, K. Tanaka and R. Kataoka

Abstract: We developed a physical model of the human vocal tract with a flexible velum using gel-type material. In this model, while the velum and pharyngeal wall were made of the gel-type material, the rest of the vocal-tract model including the nasal cavity was made of acrylic materials. We simulated four patterns of velopharyngeal closure (the Coronal, Circular, Circular with Passavant’s ridge, and Sagittal patterns), by raising the velum by means of a string attached to the velic portion while the posterior and lateral pharyngeal walls were pushed inward from the outside with acrylic bars. By continuously changing the degree of velopharyngeal closure while pulling the string, we confirmed the change of the degree of hypernasality of a speech signal produced from the model, and we confirmed acoustic evidences such as a pole-zero pair on its spectrum.

keywords: Gel-type material,Velum,Vocal Tract,Physical Model,Velopharyngeal Coupling

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