NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 O3.02-8769
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In-helmet Speech Audio Systems and Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Microphone Array Signal Processing and Active Noise Control for the In-Helmet Speech Communication

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
9 Sylvan Dr.
Bridgewater, NJ 08807 - 2235
(908) 575-8955

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Yiteng (Arden) Huang
9 Sylvan Dr.
Bridgewater, NJ 08807 - 2235
(908) 472-8410

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 7 to 8

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Widely varying working conditions of a space shuttle and the special design of an astronaut's spacesuit form an extreme acoustic environment that imposes unique challenges for capturing and transmitting speech communications to and from a crewmember. NASA has a serious unmet need for innovative voice communication systems and technologies, which provide enhanced speech intelligibility and quality, comfort and ease of use, and adequate hearing protection. This project will build on knowledge and recent breakthroughs produced by painstaking research at Bell Labs and WeVoice, Inc., in acoustic and speech signal processing for hands-free communications. It brings together the state-of-the-art and patent-pending techniques in microphone arrays, speech enhancement, and active noise control, and proposes an integrated, more reliable solution for combating high-level noise and strong reverberation. This proof-of-feasibility research will focus primarily on whether the proposed techniques that were previously developed for applications in room acoustic environments can perform as well as or better than we expect in an in-helmet acoustic environment. In addition, this research will use informal listening tests to demonstrate performance improvement and will design a subjective program that can be readily executed in Phase II to rigorously evaluate the overall system performance. The Phase I effort will provide a foundation for prototype design to be conducted in Phase II.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed novel, high performance voice communication technologies and system will be passed on to the astronauts for their use in every NASA flight mission. They will sure benefit from having a clear and reliable voice communication channel to talk to their partners and the mission control center.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The research will lead to the commercialization of two possible products/services: 1) voice communication devices working in adverse acoustic environments (e.g., those for pilots in a cockpit of an airplane, for soldiers in a combating vehicle, and for athletics in a race car.); and 2) more noise and reverberation resistant voice communication services for hearing-impaired and elderly people.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Human-Computer Interfaces

Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:50