Airflow visualization in a model of human glottis near the self-oscillating vocal folds model

Jaromír Horáček, Václav Uruba, Vojtěch Radolf, Jan Veselý, Vítězslav Bula


The contribution describes PIV (Particle Image Velocimetry) measurement of airflow in the glottal region of complex physical models of the voice production that consist of 1:1 scaled models of the trachea, the self-oscillating vocal folds and the human vocal tract with acoustical spaces that correspond to the vowels /a:/, /u:/ and /i:/. The time-resolved PIV method was used for visualization of the airflow simultaneously with measurements of subglottal pressure, radiated acoustic pressure and vocal fold vibrations. The measurements were performed within a physiologically real range of mean airflow rate and fundamental phonation frequency. The images of the vibrating vocal folds during one oscillation period were recorded by the high-speed camera at the same time instants as the velocity fields measured by the PIV method.

In the region above the model of the ventricular folds and epilarynx tube it is possible to detect large vortices with dimensions comparable with the channel cross-section and moving relatively slowly downstream. The vortices disappear in the narrower pharyngeal part of the vocal tract model where the flow is getting more uniform. The basic features of the coherent structures identified in the laryngeal cavity models in the interval of the measured airflow rates were found qualitatively similar for all three vowels investigated.


biomechanics of human voice; voice production modelling; PIV measurement of streamline patterns

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