Cambridge, U.K.: The Farina platform from HiWave delivers clear audio without obstructing the ear canal by stimulating the outer ear (see the figure). It can be mounted on spectacles or headsets. Users hear both airborne sound and sounds conducted by the soft tissues into the inner ear.
The ceramic vibrating beam acts as a bending wave transducer, effectively turning the ear into a micro-loudspeaker without blocking external sounds. The system does not create damaging pressure transients inside the ear.
Farina represents a culmination of HiWave’s research into techniques for delivering multi-octave audio from a vibrating beam of miniaturised dimensions and the methodology for matching the mechanical impedance of ceramic materials to the soft tissues of the human ear.
The Farina ceramic vibrating beam measures 25 by 3 by 0.6 mm and delivers a multi-octave audio frequency range with strong bass and clear mid-to-high frequencies. Production-ready transducers will be available in the fourth quarter of 2012.