Volume 109, Issue 2, February 2001
Index of content:
- BIOACOUSTICS 
Radiation impedance of a finite circular piston on a viscoelastic half-space with application to medical diagnosis109(2001); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.1334598View Description Hide Description
In a recent study a new analytical solution was developed and validated experimentally for the problem of surface wave generation on a linear viscoelastic half-space by a rigid circular disk located on the surface and oscillating normal to it. The results of that study suggested that, for the low audible frequency range, some previously reported values of shear viscosity for soft biological tissues may be inaccurate. Those values were determined by matching radiation impedance measurements with theoretical calculations reported previously. In the current study, the sensitivity to shear viscoelastic material constants of theoretical solutions for radiation impedance and surface wave motion are compared. Theoretical solutions are also compared to experimental measurements and numerical results from finite-element analysis. It is found that, while prior theoretical solutions for radiation impedance are accurate, use of such measurements to estimate shear viscoelastic constants is not as precise as the use of surface wavemeasurements.
Bioacoustic spatial perception by humans: A controlled laboratory measurement of spatial resolution without distal cues109(2001); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.1336138View Description Hide Description
The angular spatial resolution of a wide-angle air sonar using a continuous transmission frequency-modulated radiation, with the output coupled binaurally to the auditory system of a user, was measured under restrained controlled conditions. This was done to determine the effect of adding a narrow central field of view of 9 deg to a wide-angle sonar. The target objects were three equidistant vertical rods initially spaced apart by 10 deg. This was varied down to a spacing of 4 deg. Ten nonvisual subjects achieved an angular resolution of 6 deg. Four of these ten subjects continued learning to achieve an unexpected spatial resolution of 4 deg within the 9 deg central field. A mean error of approximately 1 deg in direction accuracy was achieved. It is inferred that the unique variations in the octave band ultrasonic echoes within the narrow field, and the invariance of the on-axis echo as one’s head is turned, enables this angular resolution and accuracy to be achieved within the wide binaural field of view of 50 deg. This ability to resolve specula objects within a narrow angular resolution element of 9 deg is linked to the bat’s ability to seemingly resolve object glints within a distal resolution element of less than 2 wavelengths.
Coding of concurrent vocal signals by the auditory midbrain: Effects of stimulus level and depth of modulation109(2001); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.1340646View Description Hide Description
The segregation of concurrent vocal signals is an auditory processing task faced by all vocal species. To segregate concurrent signals, the auditory system must encode the spectral and temporal features of the fused waveforms such that at least one signal can be individually detected. In the plainfin midshipman fish (Porichthys notatus), the overlapping mate calls of neighboring males produce acoustic beats with amplitude and phase modulations at the difference frequencies (dF) between spectral components. Prior studies in midshipman have shown that midbrain neurons provide a combinatorial code of the temporal and spectral characteristics of beats via synchronization of spike bursts to dF and changes in spike rate and interspike intervals with changes in spectral composition. In the present study we examine the effects of changes in signal parameters of beats (overall intensity level and depth of modulation) on the spike train outputs of midbrain neurons. The observed changes in spike train parameters further support the hypothesis that midbrain neurons provide a combinatorial code of the spectral and temporal features of concurrent vocal signals.