Inspiring discussions at the SONICOM Research Sandpit

Representatives from across the SONICOM consortium gathered at the University of Glasgow on 20 and 21 November to take part in the SONICOM Research Sandpit – a chance to exchange knowledge and experiences between the project consortium and external researchers and stakeholders.

The SONICOM team were joined by four guest speakers who gave their insights into current challenges in auditory research, including head-related transfer function (HRTF) personalisation as well as augmented reality and acoustics simulation.

The guests included:

  • Dr Fabian Brinkmann (Technical University of Berlin), who discussed how we can improve the realism of simulated HRTFs, including taking into account the impact of varying head-torso angle, as well as hair and skin.
  • Dr Archontis Politis (Tempere University), who presented on his research in parametric spatial audio processing and spatial acoustic scene analysis.
  • Dr Annika Neidhardt (University of Surrey), who presented her work on the perceptual optimisation of room acoustics for AR/MR.
  • Dr Enzo De Sena (University of Surrey), who discussed real-time room acoustic rendering for AR/MR/VR.

The team took full advantage of being together in person along with our external guests to have some productive and insightful discussions on topics ranging from newly designed methods for assessing HRTF personalisation, to explorations on the impact of room acoustic processing choices on complex interactions.

After an initial overview of the achievements and future plans of the SONICOM project, the invited guests presented their research engaging in relaxed and informal discussions with the consortium members, looking at joint ideas for future research, possible collaborations, as well as common efforts for tackling the various open challenges.

“It was encouraging to see how researchers from multiple disciplines and from inside and outside the SONICOM project teamed up not only to discuss and tackle challenges of future immersive audio systems but also to make their work available to the scientific community and general public,” said Dr Brinkmann.

Plans for SONICOM’s Listener Acoustic Personalisation (LAP) Challenge were also further developed – keep an eye on our X/Twitter and website for updates on when the Challenge will be accepting submissions.