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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2013, Article ID 162093, 13 pages
Research Article

Recognition of Emotions in Mexican Spanish Speech: An Approach Based on Acoustic Modelling of Emotion-Specific Vowels

Technological University of the Mixteca, Road to Acatlima K.m. 2.5, 69000 Huajuapan de León, OAX, Mexico

Received 30 March 2013; Accepted 6 June 2013

Academic Editors: R. J. Ferrari and S. Wu

Copyright © 2013 Santiago-Omar Caballero-Morales. 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.


An approach for the recognition of emotions in speech is presented. The target language is Mexican Spanish, and for this purpose a speech database was created. The approach consists in the phoneme acoustic modelling of emotion-specific vowels. For this, a standard phoneme-based Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) system was built with Hidden Markov Models (HMMs), where different phoneme HMMs were built for the consonants and emotion-specific vowels associated with four emotional states (anger, happiness, neutral, sadness). Then, estimation of the emotional state from a spoken sentence is performed by counting the number of emotion-specific vowels found in the ASR’s output for the sentence. With this approach, accuracy of 87–100% was achieved for the recognition of emotional state of Mexican Spanish speech.