Coding of Electrical Stimulation Patterns for Binaural Signal Processing in Cochlear Implants

Coding of Electrical Stimulation Patterns for Binaural Signal Processing in Cochlear Implants

Abstract logo of a head with two CIs on each side and symbolic digital signals exchanged between each side

A cochlear implant (CI) is a small electronic device that is surgically implanted in the inner ear and can restore the sense of hearing of a profoundly deaf person by electrical stimulation of the auditory nerve. Although nowadays speech intelligibility in quiet environments and even speech over the telephone represents no major problem for most CI users, speech intelligibility in noisy environments is still a major challenge. CI users need significantly higher Signal-to-Noise Ratios (SNRs) to achieve the same speech intelligibility as normal-hearing (NH) listeners. For this reason, binaural speech enhancement techniques have emerged to improve the SNR in noisy acoustic conditions by making use of the information captured by the microphones on both the left and the right ear. However, the transmission of the audio signals from one ear to the other needs to be done with low latency, low bitrates and a very high quality such that the binaural algorithms can improve speech performance in noise without unnecessarily decreasing the battery life of the devices. This project therefore is about designing a new codec that allows for such a transmission of signals while meeting the requirements mentioned. This enables the additionally aspired development of enhanced binaural signal processing strategies for CIs.


Funding:

This project is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) - Project number: 381895691


Budget:

445,800 €


Contact
Head of Research Group:
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Waldo Nogueira
Address:


DHZ-Deutsches HörZentrum Hannover
Karl-Wiechert-Allee 3
30625 Hannover
Phone: +49 (0)511 532 8025
Fax: +49 (0)511 532 6833
E-Mail: nogueiravazquez.waldo@mh-hannover.de

Publications:

About The VIANNA research team