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How to Use an Acoustic Camera

acoustic camera

What is an acoustic camera?

An acoustic camera is used for locating and visualising sources of sound. It uses a microphone array which processes sound signals for sound analysis and to establish the location of sound sources. Some acoustic cameras, such as the acoustic camera from gfai tech, also use a patented camera combined with a beam-forming technique to collect and process signals which can then form a visualisation of the sound sources superimposed on an optical image. The visualisation provides information on the location and intensity of the sound which can then be used to identify the most intense noise source.

How does an acoustic camera work?

The microphone array detects the sound source at different intervals of time and different intensities whilst the wave propagation technique of beam-forming is used to filter out sound waves from one direction.

Beam-forming or spatial filtering involves strategically delaying each individual microphone and then combining them together to establish signals from one precise location. The signal strength is then displayed on an acoustic-power map and the process is repeated throughout the entirety of the location.

Acoustic camera models do vary and some are more sophisticated than others; with some providing more complex measurements such as source distance measurements. Likewise, microphone arrays are available in many different sizes depending on the frequency range and size of the source with some even now small enough to provide measurements on mobile phones and other small devices.

Applications for acoustic cameras

An acoustic camera can be used in a variety of industries and for a wide range of applications but their primary use is to assist with noise reduction. 

Larger-sized arrays are typically used for measuring large environmental sources such as cars, planes, trains, wind turbines and factories whereas smaller-sized general purpose arrays are generally used for measurements on car engines or computing devices.

As well as their frequent use for external source measurements, acoustic cameras can also be used to improve noise reduction for the interior of vehicles.

AcSoft supply a wide range of acoustic cameras to suit all sound analysis projects. View our acoustic camera products or, alternatively, you can get in touch with us by calling 01234 639550 or emailing us.

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