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3D printed meta-earplug for minimizing the occlusion effect

Carillo, Kévin, Sgard, Franck, Dazel, Olivier and Doutres, Olivier. 2023. « 3D printed meta-earplug for minimizing the occlusion effect ». [Conference paper summary]. Canadian Acoustics - Acoustique Canadienne, vol. 51, nº 3. pp. 114-115.

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Passive earplugs are commonly associated with the occlusion effect, which refers to the increased perception ofone’s own physiological noise at low frequencies. This effect poses a significant challenge as it leads to acousticdiscomfort, thus limiting the usability and effectiveness of earplugs. To address this issue, we developed a noveldesign of a 3D printed meta-earplug composed of four Helmholtz resonators arranged in series. The meta-earplugdesign is optimize to achieve near-zero occlusion effect in a broadband frequency range from 300 Hz to 1 kHz,as verified through comprehensive measurements conducted on an artificial ear adapted to bone-conductedstimulation. The optimization of the meta-earplug geometry was carried out using an analytical model of theocclusion effect that includes the acoustic impedance of the meta-earplug medial surface. Due to the simplifiedgeometry of the prototype, the acoustic impedance of the meta-earplug was modeled using a transfer matrix model.Results show that the optimized input impedance of the meta-earplug medial surface approximately matches theinput impedance of the open earcanal weighted by the ratio of volume velocity imposed by the earcanal wall tothe earcanal cavity between open and occluded cases. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the acoustic propertiesof the meta-earplug yield significant improvements in the sound attenuation measured on artificial test fixture,particularly at the piston-like mode of the system. Hence, our findings highlight the potential of this innovative meta-earplug design to overcome the occlusion effect and enhance the sound attenuation for individuals usingearplugs.

Item Type: Peer reviewed article published in a journal
Additional Information: Thématique: Acoustics Week in Canada 2023. Montreal, QC, Canada. Oct. 03-06, 2023.
Doutres, Olivier
Affiliation: Génie mécanique
Date Deposited: 23 Nov 2023 16:52
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2023 14:58

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