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Advances in Acoustics and Vibration
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 378361, 8 pages
Research Article

Spectral Biomimetic Technique for Wood Classification Inspired by Human Echolocation

1Department of Signal Theory and Communications, Escuela Politécnica Superior, Universidad de Alcalá, Campus Universitario, Ctra. de Madrid-Barcelona, km 33.600, 28805 Alcalá de Henares, Spain
2Department of Forest Economy and Management, E.T.S.I. de Montes, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Ciudad Universitaria s/n, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Received 16 April 2012; Revised 10 July 2012; Accepted 25 July 2012

Academic Editor: Toru Otsuru

Copyright © 2012 Juan Antonio Martínez Rojas et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Palatal clicks are most interesting for human echolocation. Moreover, these sounds are suitable for other acoustic applications due to their regular mathematical properties and reproducibility. Simple and nondestructive techniques, bioinspired by synthetized pulses whose form reproduces the best features of palatal clicks, can be developed. The use of synthetic palatal pulses also allows detailed studies of the real possibilities of acoustic human echolocation without the problems associated with subjective individual differences. These techniques are being applied to the study of wood. As an example, a comparison of the performance of both natural and synthetic human echolocation to identify three different species of wood is presented. The results show that human echolocation has a vast potential.