Research Papers: Flows in Complex Systems

Pressure Distribution in a Simplified Human Ear Model for High Intensity Sound Transmission

[+] Author and Article Information
Takumi Hawa

School of Aerospace
and Mechanical Engineering,
The University of Oklahoma,
865 Asp Avenue,
Felgar Hall Room 218,
Norman, OK 73019
e-mail: hawa@ou.edu

Rong Z. Gan

School of Aerospace
and Mechanical Engineering
and OU Bioengineering Center,
The University of Oklahoma,
865 Asp Avenue,
Felgar Hall Room 218,
Norman, OK 73019
e-mail: rgan@ou.edu

lCorresponding author.

Contributed by the Fluids Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF FLUIDS ENGINEERING. Manuscript received July 30, 2013; final manuscript received February 27, 2014; published online September 4, 2014. Assoc. Editor: John Abraham.

J. Fluids Eng 136(11), 111108 (Sep 04, 2014) (7 pages) Paper No: FE-13-1462; doi: 10.1115/1.4027141 History: Received July 30, 2013; Revised February 27, 2014

High intensity noise/impulse transmission through a bench model consisting of the simplified ear canal, eardrum, and middle ear cavity was investigated using the CFX/ANSYS software package with fluid-structure interactions. The nondimensional fluid-structure interaction parameter q and the dimensionless impulse were used to describe the interactions between the high intensity pressure impulse and eardrum or tympanic membrane (TM). We found that the pressure impulse was transmitted through the straight ear canal to the TM, and the reflected overpressure at the TM became slightly higher than double the incident pressure due to the dynamic pressure (shocks) effect. Deformation of the TM transmits the incident pressure impulse to the middle ear cavity. The pressure peak in the middle ear cavity is lower than the incident pressure. This pressure reduction through the TM was also observed in our experiments that have dimensions similar to the simulation bench model. We also found that the increase of the pressure ratio as a function of the incident pressure is slightly larger than the linear growth rate. The growth rate of the pressure ratio in this preliminary study suggests that the pressure increase in the middle ear cavity may become sufficiently high to induce auditory damage and injury depending on the intensity of the incident sound noise.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Taylor, P. A., and Ford, C. C., 2009, “Simulation of Blast-Induced Early-Time Intracranial Wave Physics Leading to Traumatic Brain Injury,” ASME J. Biomech. Eng., 131(6), p. 061007. [CrossRef]
Bass, C. R., Panzer, M. B., Rafaels, K. A., Wood, G., Shridharani, J., and Capehart, B., 2012, “Brain Injuries From Blast,” Ann. Biomed. Eng., 40(1), pp. 185–202. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Panzer, M. B., Myers, B. S., Capehart, B. P., and Bass, C. R., 2012, “Development of a Finite Element Model for Blast Brain Injury and the Effects of CSF Cavitation,” Ann. Biomed. Eng., 40(7), pp. 1530–1544. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Mrena, R., Paakkonen, R., Back, L., Pirvola, U., and Ylikoski, J., 2004, “Otologic Consequences of Blast Exposure: A Finnish Case Study of a Shopping Mall Bomb Explosion,” Acta Otolaryngol., 124(8), pp. 946–952. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Steele, C. R., and Taber, L. A., 1979, “Comparison of WKB Calculations and Experimental Results for 3-Dimensional Cochlear Models,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 65(4), pp. 1007–1018. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Cancelli, C., Dangelo, S., Masili, M., and Malvano, R., 1985, “Experimental Results in a Physical Model of the Cochlea,” J. Fluid Mech., 153, pp. 361–388. [CrossRef]
Lechner, T. P., 1993, “A Hydromechanical Model of the Cochlea With Nonlinear Feedback Using PVF(2) Bending Transducers,” Hear. Res., 66(2), pp. 202–212. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Steele, C. R., and Zais, J. G., 1985, “Effect of Coiling in a Cochlear Model,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 77(5), pp. 1849–1852. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Loh, C. H., 1983, “Multiple Scale Analysis of the Spirally Coiled Cochlea,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 74, pp. 94–103. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Koike, T., Wada, H., and Kobayashi, T., 2002, “Modeling of the Human Middle Ear Using the Finite-Element Method,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 111(3), pp. 1306–1317. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Sun, Q., Gan, R. Z., Chang, K. H., and Dormer, K. J., 2002, “Computer-Integrated Finite Element Modeling of Human Middle Ear,” Biomech. Model. Mechanobiol., 1(2), pp. 109–122. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Gan, R. Z., Feng, B., and Sun, Q., 2004, “Three-Dimensional Finite Element Modeling of Human Ear for Sound Transmission,” Ann. Biomed. Eng., 32(6), pp. 847–859. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Zhang, X. M., and Gan, R. Z., 2011, “A Comprehensive Model of Human Ear for Analysis of Implantable Hearing Devices,” IEEE Trans. Biomed. Eng., 58(10), pp. 3024–3027. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Gan, R. Z., Reeves, B. P., and Wang, X. L., 2007, “Modeling of Sound Transmission From Ear Canal to Cochlea,” Ann. Biomed. Eng., 35(12), pp. 2180–2195. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Gan, R. Z., Cheng, T., Dai, C. K., Yang, F., and Wood, M. W., 2009, “Finite Element Modeling of Sound Transmission With Perforations of Tympanic Membrane,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 126(1), pp. 243–253. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Taylor, G. I., 1963, The Pressure and Impulse of Submarine Explosion Waves on Plates, Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK.
Gan, R. Z., and Wang, X. L., 2007, “Multifield Coupled Finite Element Analysis for Sound Transmission in Otitis Media With Effusion,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 122(6), pp. 3527–3538. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Wever, E. G., and Lawrence, M., 1982, Physiological Acoustics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ.
Batchelor, G. K., 1967, An Introduction to Fluid Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.
ANSYS, 2010, “ANSYS CFX-Pre User's Guide,” Canonsburg, PA.
Wada, H., Metoki, T., and Kobayashi, T., 1992, “Analysis of Dynamic Behavior of Human Middle-Ear Using a Finite-Element Method,” J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 92(6), pp. 3157–3168. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Kirikae, I., 1960, The Structure and Function of the Middle Ear, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.
Von Bekesy, G., 1960, Experiments in Hearing, McGraw-Hill, New York.
Mays, G. C., and Smith, P. D., 1995, Blast Effects on Buildings, Thomas Telford Publications, London.
Cheng, T., Dai, C. K., and Gan, R. Z., 2007, “Viscoelastic Properties of Human Tympanic Membrane,” Ann. Biomed. Eng., 35(2), pp. 305–314. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Luo, H. Y., Dai, C. K., Gan, R. Z., and Lu, H. B., 2009, “Measurement of Young's Modulus of Human Tympanic Membrane at High Strain Rates,” ASME J. Biomech. Eng., 131(6), p. 064501. [CrossRef]
Krutzer, B., Ros, M., Smit, J., and de Jong, W., 2011, “A Review of Synthetic Latices in Surgical Glove Use,” http://www.kraton.com/products/cariflex/synthetic_latices.pdf


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Geometry of the model

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

A typical example of variation of the blast overpressure with time at the entrance of the ear canal model

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Taylor's plot (momentum ratio, I/I0 versus q) for considering fluid-structure interaction

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

A simulation of pressure propagation through the ear canal, TM, and cavity at six different times, t = 0.02, 0.04, 0.06, 0.08, 0.10, and 0.12 ms when t0 = 90 μs, ρs = 36 kg/m3, and EY = 6 × 105N/m2

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Reflected pressure wave magnitudes against a solid wall with various inlet or incident pressures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Pressure ratio dependence of the number of nodes in the flow field

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

TM deflection dependence of the number of nodes of the TM structure

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

(a) Illustration of the design of the bench model and (b) picture of the bench model with inserted pressure sensors placed inside of the blast or high intensity sound test chamber

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

(a) Typical waveform of p0 (pressure amplitude-time curve) measured in bench model and (b) waveform of p2 measured in bench model

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 10

Pressure ratio p0/p2 dependence of input pressure p0

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 11

Pressure ratio p0/p2 dependence on q



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In