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**A Microphone Array Tutorial
**

Iain McCowan August 20, 2004

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

1

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

What is a Microphone Array?

What is a Microphone Array?

**A microphone array is an array of microphones:
**

Multiple microphones combined to act as a single device.

**A microphone array can be used to:
**

Discriminate between sounds based on direction. e.g. Input, Speaker 1, Speaker 2. Locate sound sources.

**A microphone array provides hands-free/distant acquisition.
**

Less constraining on users. Can be used for surveillance.

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

2

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

Our Model

The Wave Equation

2

s(t, r) =

1 δ2 s(t, r) c 2 δt 2

where:

2

is the Laplacian operator (For Cartesian coordinates,

2f

=

δ2 f δx 2

+

δ2 f δy 2

+

δ2 f ) δz 2

c is the speed of propagation, which depends on the type and temperature of the ﬂuid. r is the position vector, r = x y z

T

.

**s is the amplitude of the wave (e.g. sound pressure level).
**

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 3

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

Sound Propagation

Sound propagates through a ﬂuid (e.g. air) as a longitudinal pressure wave, with speed c ≈ 340ms−1 in air at 20o C . Plane Waves For a plane wave, the solution to the wave equation takes the form:

k

y

z

s(f , r) = s(f )e −jk·r where: 2πf k= c

θ φ

x

sin θ cos φ sin θ sin φ cos θ

**(θ, φ) is the direction of propagation, and r is a position vector relative to the sound source location.
**

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 4

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

Continuous Apertures

An aperture is a spatial region that transmits or receives propagating waves, e.g. an antenna for EM waves, a hole in an opaque screen for optics, a microphone for acoustics. The aperture sensitivity function w (f , r) gives the response as a function of position on the aperture.

Source

s(f)

k

r

. s(f)e-jk r

Aperture

w(f,r)

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

5

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

Aperture Directivity

The received signal at a given point on the aperture is: s(f )w (f , r)e −jk·r Aperture Response The total response of the aperture to signal s(f ) is thus: D(f , k) =

V

w (f , r)e −jk·r dr

The aperture response is also known as the directivity function, as it gives the response as a function of the direction of arrival of the plane wave (recalling that k = g (f , θ, φ)).

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 6

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

**Fourier Transform Relationship
**

From Time to Frequency Domain The Fourier Transform operation transforms domain from t → ω:

∞

X (ω) =

−∞

x(t)e −jωt dt,

commonly denoted as: X (ω) = Ft {x(t)}.

note ω = 2πf

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 7

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

**Fourier Transform Relationship
**

From Time to Frequency Domain The Fourier Transform operation transforms domain from t → ω:

∞

**From Sensitivity to Directivity At a ﬁxed frequency, the directivity is: D(k) =
**

V

X (ω) =

−∞

x(t)e −jωt dt,

w (r)e −jk·r dr

commonly denoted as: X (ω) = Ft {x(t)}.

which can be denoted: D(k) = Fr {w (r)}.

note ω = 2πf

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 7

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

**Directivity of a Linear Aperture
**

For a linear aperture r = x of length L, having uniform sensitivity, w (f , r) = rect(x/L) ⇒ D(f , r) = L sinc(kx L).

w(f,r)

1

s(f)

-L/2

L

0

L/2

x

|D(f,k)|

w(f,r)

L

−3λ/L

−2λ/L

−λ/L

0

λ/L

2λ/L

3λ/L

kx

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

8

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Our Model Sound Propagation Continuous Apertures Aperture Directivity Discrete Apertures

**Directivity of a Discrete Linear Aperture
**

This directivity can be approximated by a discrete aperture, which spatially samples the continuous aperture.

wn(f,rn)

1

s(f)

-L/2

L

0

L/2

xn

|D(f,k)|

wn(f,rn)

L

−3λ/L

−2λ/L

−λ/L

0

λ/L

2λ/L

3λ/L

kx

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

9

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Microphone Array Directivity Pattern Varying the Number of Microphones Varying the Length of the Array Variation with Frequency Aliasing and Symmetry

**Microphone Array Directivity Pattern
**

A microphone array is a discrete receiving aperture. A plot of the directivity function over diﬀerent angles of arrival is known as the directivity pattern. Directivity of Continuous Aperture D(f , k) =

V

w (f , r)e −jk·r dr

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

10

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Microphone Array Directivity Pattern Varying the Number of Microphones Varying the Length of the Array Variation with Frequency Aliasing and Symmetry

**Microphone Array Directivity Pattern
**

A microphone array is a discrete receiving aperture. A plot of the directivity function over diﬀerent angles of arrival is known as the directivity pattern. Directivity of Linear Array

N−1

D(f , k) =

n=0

wn (f )e −jk·rn ,

where there are N microphones and rn is the location of the nth microphone.

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

10

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Microphone Array Directivity Pattern Varying the Number of Microphones Varying the Length of the Array Variation with Frequency Aliasing and Symmetry

**Microphone Array Directivity Pattern
**

A microphone array is a discrete receiving aperture. A plot of the directivity function over diﬀerent angles of arrival is known as the directivity pattern. Horizontal Directivity of Uniform Linear Array

N−1

D(f , φ) =

n=0

wn (f )e −j

2πf c

nd cos φ

,

where there are N microphones, d is the uniform inter-element spacing, and θ = π/2.

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

10

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

**Varying the Number of Microphones
**

Varying the number of sensors, N, for a given array length 1 decreases the sidelobe level (f =1 kHz,L=0.5 m,wn (f ) = N ): Directivity Pattern for Varying N

|D(f,φ)|

N=3 N=5 N = 10

0

20

40

60

80

φ

100

120

140

160

180

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

11

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

**Varying the Length of the Array
**

Varying the array length, L = Nd, for ﬁxed N decreases the 1 main lobe width (f =1 kHz,N=5,wn (f ) = N ): Directivity Pattern for Varying L

|D(f,φ)|

d = 0.1 m d = 0.15 m d = 0.2 m

0

20

40

60

80

φ

100

120

140

160

180

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

12

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

**Variation with Frequency
**

Varying the frequency of interest 400Hz ≤ f ≤ 3000Hz 1 (N=5,d=0.1 m,wn (f ) = N ): Directivity Pattern for Varying f

|D(f,φ)|

1 0.9 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0 0 2000 1500 20 40 60 80 1000 100 120 140 500 160 180 0 2500 3000

φ

f

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

13

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

**Aliasing and Symmetry
**

Spatial Aliasing: Analogous to the Nyquist frequency in temporal sampling, we have a restriction on minimum spatial sampling rate. Linear arrays require inter-element spacing d < λmin to avoid copies of the main lobe appearing in the 2 directivity pattern, where λmin is the smallest wavelength of interest (corresponding to highest frequency). Symmetry of Directivity Pattern: For a linear array, the directivity pattern is symmetrical about the array axis.

90 120 0.8 0.6 150 0.4 0.2 30 1 60

180

0

210

330

240 270

300

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

14

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Deﬁnition Delay-Sum Beamformer Beyond the Delay-Sum Beamformer

Beamforming

Horizontal Directivity of Uniform Linear Array

N−1

D(f , φ) =

n=0

wn (f )e −j

2πf c

nd cos φ

,

The term wn (f ) represents a ﬁlter applied to microphone n. The analysis so far has assumed uniform, frequency invariant, 1 microphone ﬁlters wn (f ) = N . In general, we can design ﬁlters to give a desired steering and shaping of the directivity pattern. This is referred to as microphone array beamforming.

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 15

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Deﬁnition Delay-Sum Beamformer Beyond the Delay-Sum Beamformer

Beamforming

Microphone Array Beamformer Output

N−1

y (f ) =

n=0

wn (f )sn (f )

The term wn (f ) represents a ﬁlter applied to microphone n. The analysis so far has assumed uniform, frequency invariant, 1 microphone ﬁlters wn (f ) = N . In general, we can design ﬁlters to give a desired steering and shaping of the directivity pattern. This is referred to as microphone array beamforming.

Iain McCowan Microphone Array Tutorial 15

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Deﬁnition Delay-Sum Beamformer Beyond the Delay-Sum Beamformer

**Delay-Sum Beamformer
**

For the uniform linear array, using a simple time-delay ﬁlter: 1 2πf wn (f ) = e j c nd cos φs N will lead to a horizontal directivity function: 1 D(f , φ) = N

N−1

e −j

n=0

2πf c

nd(cos φ−cos φs )

,

steering the main lobe of the directivity pattern to the source direction φs . This is the well-known delay-sum beamformer.

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

16

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Deﬁnition Delay-Sum Beamformer Beyond the Delay-Sum Beamformer

Beyond the Delay-Sum Beamformer

Delay-sum is the simplest beamformer: it just ensures that the response maximum occurs for a given direction. Many more sophisticated beamforming techniques exist, which diﬀer in the design criteria for the beamforming ﬁlters wn (f ). Examples include:

the superdirective beamformer, which maximises the gain in the desired direction while minimising average gain over all other directions. adaptive beamformers, which dynamically update ﬁlters to minimise the power from localised noise sources.

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

17

Introduction Fundamentals Analysis of Directivity Pattern Beamforming

Deﬁnition Delay-Sum Beamformer Beyond the Delay-Sum Beamformer

**Delay-Sum vs Superdirective Beamforming
**

For a circular array (N=8, radius = 10 cm) Delay-sum Beamformer

120 150 180 210 240 270 250 Hz 300 90 1 0.5 60 30 0 330 150 180 210 240 270 500 Hz 300 120 90 1 0.5 60 30 0 330 150 180 210 240 270 250 Hz 300

Superdirective Beamformer

120 90 1 0.5 60 30 0 330 150 180 210 240 270 500 Hz 300 120 90 1 0.5 60 30 0 330

120 150 180 210 240

90 1 0.5

60 30 0 330 150 180 210

120

90 1 0.5

60 30 0 330 150 180 210

120

90 1 0.5

60 30 0 330 150 180 210

120

90 1 0.5

60 30 0 330

270 1000 Hz

300

240

270 2000 Hz

300

240

270 1000 Hz

300

240

270 2000 Hz

300

Iain McCowan

Microphone Array Tutorial

18

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