Auditory Mechanics

Research Lab: Auditory Mechanics Laboratory

Site: Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, Lyman Duff Medical Sciences Bldg.

Director: W. Robert J. Funnell, PhD Eng., Assoc. Professor

The overall objectives of the research in this laboratory are improved diagnosis and treatment of hearing disorders based on a quantitative understanding of the mechanical behaviour of the middle ear. Our approach involves the development and analysis of three-dimensional finite-element models, an engineering technique that depends heavily on the use of computers.  The goal is to enhance the non-invasive clinical evaluation of middle-ear and inner-ear function, especially for newborn hearing screening.  The models are also useful for the design of techniques and prostheses for middle-ear surgery.

Our modelling work is done in conjunction with experimental measurements that we make in Dr. Sam Daniel's lab in this department, and also in close collaboration with labs elsewhere in Canada and internationally.  We make use of several types of imaging data produced at McGill (for example, clinical CT scans and state-of-the-art nanoCTscans) as well as data from collaborators elsewhere.

We are also involved in research on using 3-D models in anatomy education and in surgical simulation.

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