Hearing, Recognizing, and Understanding - Research and Applications in Binaural Technology


Junior Professor Janina Fels, Professorship of Medical Acoustics at RWTH Aachen


The Lecture

Binaural technology focuses on the generation and playback of aurally compensated signals. The two-ear, binaural hearing a prerequisitie for distinguishing signals from one another, hearing a single source from many background noises, and to tune out disruptive signals. The binaural analysis of sound reflections also plays a role in the localization of sound reflections and orientation in a room.

The focus of binaural technology is to correctly physically model the two aural signals a human receives and processes. Experiments on perception and attention build on this with the aim of a better understanding of the processing in the auditory system.

The lecture presents the fields of application of binaural technology, which range from fundamentally-oriented hearing research to the neurosciences. What are the difference in the processing mechanisms in hearing-able and hearing-disabled people, between children and adults, those with age-related hearing loss, those with hearing aids, or individuals with cochlear implants? What is the auditive perception of the hearing-abled, hearing-disbaled, and blind subjects in complext acoustic situations like classrooms, lecture halls, restaurants, in open spaces, and outdoors like in the city?

The Speaker

  • Studied electrical engineering, specialization in communications engineering, at RWTH Aachen, doctorate in 2008
  • Head of the working group "Medical Acoustics, Binaural Technology, Spatial Audio, Audiology, and Psychoacoustics" at the RWTH Aachen Institute of Technical Acoustics, as of 2008
  • Postdoc at the Center for Applied Hearing Research, CAHR for short, at the Technical University of Denmark DTU, and at Widex, Denmark, 2009
  • Work on the further developed of ear simulators for children for hearing aid development
  • Visiting researcher at the Institute of Neurosciences and Medicine, Structural and Functional Organization of the Brain (INM-1) at Forschungszentrum Jülich, 2012 to 2015
  • As of October 2012: Junior Professor of Medical Acoustics at RWTH Aachen
  • Lothar-Cremer-Preis der deutschen Gesellschaft für Akustik, 2013
  • Member of the Junges Kolleg of the NRW Academy of Science, Humanities, and the Arts, 2014