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Modelling cochlear mechanics

Prikkel, J. (2009) Modelling cochlear mechanics. Master's Thesis / Essay, Mathematics.

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The cochlea, in the interior of the mammalian hearing organ, is where the transduction from sound into a neural signal takes place. In 1960, Von Békésy showed how different frequencies are distributed along the cochlea and therefore excite different nerves that lead from the cochlea to the brain. Due to his research we know that the cochlea acts as frequency analyser by varying resonance frequencies over its length. Geometry and stiffness variations along the cochlear duct lead to these different resonance frequencies. In the 19th century, Helmholtz had already concluded that there had to be a non-linear element in the conversion of sound into a neural signal. Later research has identified the so-called outer hair cells as the main source of the non-linear behaviour. The outer hair cells have been shown to be motile: they are able to change their shape in response to stimulation. In this thesis we develop a new cochlear model, which allows us to study the influence of variations in geometry, stiffness and outer hair cell motility on resonance frequencies.

Item Type: Thesis (Master's Thesis / Essay)
Degree programme: Mathematics
Thesis type: Master's Thesis / Essay
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 07:28
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 07:28

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