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The University of Southampton

Sound Design in Our Sound Environment: Soundscape Design, Auralisation and Evaluation in Environmental Acoustics  Seminar

27 February 2018
Building 13/ 3017

Event details

ISVR Engineering Research Seminar Series 2017-2018


The soundscape of our environment helps us to better understand the world we live in, and has a direct effect on our health and wellbeing. Human society has battled with the concept of excessive noise since hitting one rock against another produced some of the first tools, and yet the complete absence of sound in our environment can prove to be equally unsettling. If the presence of sound, both wanted and unwanted, is something that cannot be avoided, how might we design our environment to deliver a more optimal or pleasing aural experience?

Auralisation – the audio equivalent of visualisation - is key in developing a better understanding of how significant changes or infrastructure planning in our urban environment can have an impact on our related environmental soundscape. It allows consultants, planners and other stakeholders to hear the potential acoustic changes that might result, so that designs might be better optimized; it is also a valuable dissemination tool for informing the public as to the nature of such changes. Auralisation also facilitates subjective soundscape assessment of proposed developments at the design stage and once construction is complete, smart sensor networks enable soundscape monitoring and objective evaluation on an ongoing basis. 

This presentation gives an overview of how auralisation has been used in the context of recent soundscape case studies at the University of York AudioLab. The complete auralisation chain is presented, from source measurement to soundscape monitoring, through sound propagation modelling using numerical simulation, soundfield rendering and the potential for immersive multimodal presentation.

Speaker information

Damian Murphy , University of York. Damian Murphy is Professor in Sound and Music Computing at the Department of Electronic Engineering, University of York, where he has been a member of academic staff since 2000, and is the University Research Theme Champion for Creativity. He started his career in the Performing Arts Department at Harrogate College and has previously held positions at Leeds Metropolitan University and Bretton Hall College. His research focuses on virtual acoustics, spatial audio, physical modelling, and audio signal processing. He has been principal investigator on a number of AHRC and EPSRC funded projects relating to room acoustics simulation and auralisation, and published over 130 journal articles, conference papers and books in the area. He is a member of the Audio Engineering Society, a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and a visiting lecturer to the Department of Speech, Music and Hearing at KTH, Stockholm, where he specialises in spatial audio and acoustics. He has held visiting researcher status at a number of universities internationally. Prof. Murphy is also an active sound artist and in 2004 was appointed as one of the UK's first AHRC/ACE Arts and Science Research Fellows, investigating the compositional and aesthetic aspects of sound spatialisation, acoustic modelling techniques and the acoustics of heritage spaces.

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