The objective of the present study is the detailed analysis of the unsteady vortex dynamics downstream of the human glottis during phonation at typical fundamental frequencies of the male voice of about 120 Hz. A hydraulic respiratory mock circuit has been built, including a factor of three up-scaled realistic dynamic model of the vocal folds. Time-resolving flow measurements were carried out downstream of the glottis by means of high-speed particle image velocimetry (PIV). The function of the human glottis is reproduced by two counter-rotating cams, each of which is covered with a stretched silicone membrane. The three-dimensional (3-D) geometry of the cams is designed such that the rotation leads to a realistic time-varying motion and profile of the glottis and waveform of the glottal cycle. Using high-speed PIV, the velocity field is captured with high spatial and temporal resolution to investigate the unsteady vortex dynamics of the cyclic jet-like flow in the vocal tract. The results help us to understand the vorticity interaction within the pulsating jet and, consequently, the generated sound in a human voice. In addition, changing the 3-D contours of the cams enables us to investigate basic pathological differences of the glottis function and the resulting alterations of the velocity and vorticity field in the vocal tract. The results are presented for typical physiological flow conditions in the human glottis. The frequencies of periodic vortex structures generated downstream of the glottis are fivefold higher than the fundamental frequency of the vocal folds’ oscillation. The highest vorticity fluctuations have a phase shift of 35% relative to the opening of the glottis. Finally, the flow field in the vocal tract is identified to be highly three-dimensional.
Experiments in Fluids – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 13, 2005
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