The Correspondence of Vocal Tract Resonance With Volumes Obtained From Magnetic Resonance Images The increasing availability of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a research, and even clinical, tool in speech production makes possible a wide range of quantitative methods in vocal tract measurement. In these initial stages of application, it is essential that the limits of the method be identified. The present investigation ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 1992
The Correspondence of Vocal Tract Resonance With Volumes Obtained From Magnetic Resonance Images
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Christopher A. Moore
    University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA
  • Contact author: Christopher A. Moore, PhD, 303 Salk Hall, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15261.
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 1992
The Correspondence of Vocal Tract Resonance With Volumes Obtained From Magnetic Resonance Images
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1992, Vol. 35, 1009-1023. doi:10.1044/jshr.3505.1009
History: Received June 7, 1991 , Accepted January 27, 1992
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1992, Vol. 35, 1009-1023. doi:10.1044/jshr.3505.1009
History: Received June 7, 1991; Accepted January 27, 1992

The increasing availability of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a research, and even clinical, tool in speech production makes possible a wide range of quantitative methods in vocal tract measurement. In these initial stages of application, it is essential that the limits of the method be identified. The present investigation was designed to apply the techniques of digital image analysis and volumetric measurement to MRls obtained for the vocal tract during production of continuant speech sounds, and to apply these measures to a well-established and thoroughly tested model of acoustic transmission (Stevens & House, 1955). The results demonstrated that, although there were several sources of relatively large error and measurement bias, the vocal tract volumes obtained from MRIs were significantly predictive of vocal tract resonance frequencies. These results are discussed with respect to limits and potential for future application of MRI to speech production research.

Acknowledgments
The author would like to express his appreciation to Helen Sharp for her assistance in data analysis, to Joseph Gillen for software development, to the staff at the Pittsburgh NMR Institute, and to two anonymous reviewers. This work was supported by NIDR grant DE01694.
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