Acoustic innovation: e-sound by Audi

Posted on 05. Apr, 2012 by in Audi Canada

Audi’s destiny e-tron models will cover prolonged distances powered by many wordless electric motors. To safeguard that pedestrians in civic settings will hear them, a code has grown a fake solution: Audi e-sound.

Rudolf Halbmeir’s workstation is not accurately standard of an Audi engineer. There is a digital piano on his desk, dual studio-quality loudspeakers subsequent to his mechanism monitor, and a raise of song magazines off to a side. “A car’s sound,” says Halbmeir, an acoustics engineer, “is identical to music.”

Sound is an generally sparkling aspect of a vehicle. Although it can be described in earthy terms, there is no surrogate for experiencing it firsthand. A car’s sound is emotional, not intellectual. Although we consciously register a car’s sounds usually spasmodic while on a road, they are always there – personification a essential purpose in a pushing experience. Sounds send signals. Low-range frequencies advise energy and composure, while mid-range frequencies evacuate sportiness and agility.

All Audi models furnish sound signatures that are not usually well-rounded and harmonious, though also promote performance, reward peculiarity and respectability. “Good sound pattern is a formidable endeavor,” explains Dr. Ralf Kunkel, Head of Acoustics during Audi. “We have collected a lot of imagination over a years. We have also schooled how to amplify pleasing frequencies and to conceal upsetting noises.”

In a series-production Audi, a explosion engine now reserve a music. Conversely, a engine in an electric-powered e-tron is not an option, as it is too still and a high frequencies are not accurately melodious. Audi’s e-tron models will therefore underline a fake sound signature. Rudolf Halbmeir teamed adult with his colleagues Axel Brombach and Dr. Lars Hinrichsen to emanate it.

They used computers to do many of a work. Using program to brew and listen to tones, assess, and afterwards re-mix: Halbmeir is truly eager about a artistic process. After all, in his gangling time, he writes songs and composes song in his possess recording studio – where he himself plays a lot of instruments. “I emanate one-of-a-kind romantic sound structures,” says Halbmeir. “There aren’t many differences between song and a vehicle’s sound. we trust my instincts and have to try out new ideas to establish where they will take me.”

Which ideas, exactly? “Some science-fiction films supposing impulse suitable for certain magnitude ranges,” responds Halbmeir. “But there was zero in a genuine universe that offering utterly a right sound. When we harmonise song or sounds, we have to be loyal to your convictions. The impulse we cut corners, we radically finish adult with conveyor music.”

Dr. Ralf Kunkel adds: “Because we here during Audi are all automotive experts, we have a good advantage over sound specialists elsewhere. We know a vehicles inside and out, not to discuss how they work and behave.”

The e-sound by Audi might be artificial, though it is authentic. In fact, a e-tron itself generates a sound by a millisecond. Dr. Lars Hinrichsen, a consultant for hardware and software, explains: “Data relating to a electric motor’s rotational speed, automobile speed, loads, and other parameters is invariably granted by a automobile to a control unit. It afterwards uses this information to beget sound.”

The e-sound is played around a stout loudspeaker trustworthy to a car’s undercarriage. Axel Brombach, a dilettante in this field, shares details: “We designed it to hoop as most as 40 watts, though during normal operation it ranges between 5 and 8 watts. That’s shrill adequate for circuitously pedestrians and cyclists to hear a e-tron.” A fragment of a sound signature enters a vehicle’s interior around airborne and structure-borne sound waves. “We could implement sound paths and automatic actuators for some-more sound in a interior,” explains Dr. Kunkel. “After all, a automobile physique is fundamentally a vast soundboard. But we trust strongly that a e-tron models call for an atmosphere of calm, that best conveys a singular knowledge of electric driving.”

Key measurements: a acoustic exam bed
A change in scenery: a acoustic exam bed on a building’s belligerent building is a vast room, travelling some 350 m2 with a seven-meter ceiling. Dense rows of wedges full of potion wool, any a scale in length, plan from a walls. These wedges catch a infancy of any sound energy; things sound roughly like they do outdoors. In a center of a room is a dynamometer exam bed, between dual prolonged rows of microphones atop tripods. The dynamometer serves essentially to magnitude sound as if a automobile were pushing by, with tires on a drum and a microphones entertainment acoustic data.

Halbmeir and his colleagues used a acoustic exam bed to grasp many pivotal advancements for a R8 e-tron prototype, that facilities e-sound technology. All a while, they had to sojourn wakeful of regulatory developments. Dating behind to early 2011, discipline are being crafted in a United States per a volume of alerts issued by electric vehicles.

“We’ll substantially have to safeguard heard alerts usually adult to 30 km/h; above that speed, a tires beget adequate noise,” says Dr. Kunkel. “But that isn’t utterly acceptable – we’ll positively boost a top extent for alerts.”

“The exam bed was a pivotal growth apparatus for us,” says Axel Brombach. “It did not, however, concede us to honestly weigh a e-sound. We were blank bland conditions such as motion, wind, and other vehicles. So we afterwards gathering on tangible roads. Listening, seeing, feeling: they all go together.”

Out of a building and to a street. A red Audi R8 e-tron pulls adult around a corner, purring gently. But when Rudolf Halbmeir taps a gas pedal, a croon turns into a cultivated growl. Though not distinct an superb V8, it is generally pristine and nuanced, and is hidden in splendid and innovative overtones. The Audi R8 e-tron positively sounds like a sports car, though also one-of-a-kind and really futuristic. Halbmeir stops a automobile and inquires with a grin: “Great, isn’t it?”

And e-sound for this electric-powered high-performance sports automobile is only a beginning. Each and any Audi e-tron indication will have a sound signature all a possess – similar, yes, though any one unique. Because an Audi’s sound is not only any music: it is Vorsprung durch Technik to one’s ears.


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