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Effect of the pinna in sound magnification in rabbits

Harry Erwin herwin at gmu.edu
Thu Mar 4 14:07:51 EST 1999

Vicky Bowles <v.bowles at rhbnc.ac.uk> wrote:

> I'm doing a research project using the pinna of rabbit and hare ears.
> The idea is to determine whether the pinna changes the sound as it
> enters the ear.  Different frequencies of sound have been used, and it
> appears that the ear is more sensitive to higher frequencies.
> I am having huge problems finding references about this subject - it
> seems that this sort of experiment has not been done in the past.  If
> anyone knows anything about the effect / use of the pinna, particularly
> in rabbits/hares, or anything else that you think might be relevant, it
> would be very greatly appreciated.
> Thanks
> Vicky Bowles
> v.bowles at rhbnc.ac.uk

My bibliographic notes are at home, but you might start by exploring the
Journal of the Acoustic Society of America (JASA).  There was good work
done in the 70s on the ear transfer function in humans, and there has
also been work published on the ear transfer function in other species,
especially bats.  I would recommend trying to develop an overall picture
of the ear transfer function as a function of azimuth, elevation, and
frequency, since that allows you to use the data in computational
modeling.  Also try to measure the variation in ear transfer function
between individuals and ears, since it is significant, and your model
should be relatively robust to it.  Good Luck.

Harry Erwin, Web Page: http://mason.gmu.edu/~herwin 
Senior Software Analyst supporting the FAA, PhD candidate in 
computational neuroscience--modeling how bats echolocate--and 
lecturer for CS 211 (data structures and advanced C++).

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