Document Type

Conference Paper


Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Acoustics, 2. ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY, Electrical and electronic engineering

Publication Details

Signals and Systems Conference (ISSC 2012), NUI Maynooth, 2012.


During voiced speech, the larynx provides quasi-periodic acoustic excitation of the vocal tract. In most electrolarynxes, mechanical vibrations are produced by a linear electromechanical actuator, the armature of which percusses against a metal or plastic plate at a frequency within the range of glottal excitation. In this paper, a phonological analysis of a section of results from an online perceptual intelligibility test was performed which compared speech produced using a novel hands-free electrolarynx and a commercially available electrolarynx. A portion of the test consisted of a closed-set format containing a selection of four sets of four random CVC audio samples (recorded by two speakers - 1 male, 1 female - using the Servox™ and the hands-free pager motor design). Each survey participant was requested to listen to every recording and then choose the word they thought most closely resembled the recording in which they heard. The phenomenon referred to as Irish-English, as documented by Hickey [1], highlights the historical development of the English language and how its pronunciation currently varies throughout the country. The two speakers used in the intelligibility test originated from two phonologically contrasting regions – a male from the East and a female from the West. These differences are analysed with the aid of findings by Hickey and assessed as to whether they could potentially improve or hinder the intelligibility of an utterance.