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Title: Online source separation in reverberant environments exploiting known speaker locations
Authors: Harris, Jack D.
Keywords: Digital signal processing
Blind source separation
Independent vector analysis
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: © Jack Duncan Harris
Abstract: This thesis concerns blind source separation techniques using second order statistics and higher order statistics for reverberant environments. A focus of the thesis is algorithmic simplicity with a view to the algorithms being implemented in their online forms. The main challenge of blind source separation applications is to handle reverberant acoustic environments; a further complication is changes in the acoustic environment such as when human speakers physically move. A novel time-domain method which utilises a pair of finite impulse response filters is proposed. The method of principle angles is defined which exploits a singular value decomposition for their design. The pair of filters are implemented within a generalised sidelobe canceller structure, thus the method can be considered as a beamforming method which cancels one source. An adaptive filtering stage is then employed to recover the remaining source, by exploiting the output of the beamforming stage as a noise reference. A common approach to blind source separation is to use methods that use higher order statistics such as independent component analysis. When dealing with realistic convolutive audio and speech mixtures, processing in the frequency domain at each frequency bin is required. As a result this introduces the permutation problem, inherent in independent component analysis, across the frequency bins. Independent vector analysis directly addresses this issue by modeling the dependencies between frequency bins, namely making use of a source vector prior. An alternative source prior for real-time (online) natural gradient independent vector analysis is proposed. A Student's t probability density function is known to be more suited for speech sources, due to its heavier tails, and is incorporated into a real-time version of natural gradient independent vector analysis. The final algorithm is realised as a real-time embedded application on a floating point Texas Instruments digital signal processor platform. Moving sources, along with reverberant environments, cause significant problems in realistic source separation systems as mixing filters become time variant. A method which employs the pair of cancellation filters, is proposed to cancel one source coupled with an online natural gradient independent vector analysis technique to improve average separation performance in the context of step-wise moving sources. This addresses `dips' in performance when sources move. Results show the average convergence time of the performance parameters is improved. Online methods introduced in thesis are tested using impulse responses measured in reverberant environments, demonstrating their robustness and are shown to perform better than established methods in a variety of situations.
Description: A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.
Sponsor: Dstl, Direction Generale de l'Armement
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/19627
Appears in Collections:PhD Theses (Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering)

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