Modeling bone conduction of sound in the human head using hp-finite elements



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This work focuses on the development of a reliable numerical model for investigating the bone-conduction of sound in the human head. The main challenge of the problem is the lack of fundamental knowledge regarding the transmission of acoustic energy through non-airborne pathways to the cochlea. I employed a fully coupled model based on the acoustic/elastic interaction problem with a detailed resolution of the cochlea region and its interface with the skull and the air pathways. The problem was simulated via hp-finite element approximation, employing a hybrid mesh (tetrahedral, prismatic and pyramidal elements) to better capture the geometrical features of the head. The numerical results thus obtained provide an insight into this fundamental, long standing research problem.