DOI: 10.3397/in_2023_0730 ISSN: 0736-2935

Active Noise Control in The New Century: The Role and Prospect of Signal Processing

Dongyuan Shi, Bhan Lam, Woon-Seng Gan, Jordan Cheer, Stepehen J. Elliott

Since Paul Leug's 1933 patent application for a system for the active control of sound, the field of active noise control (ANC) has not flourished until the advent of digital signal processors forty years ago. Early theoretical advancements in digital signal processing and processors laid the groundwork for the phenomenal growth of the field, particularly over the past quarter-century. The widespread commercial success of ANC in aircraft cabins, automobile cabins, and headsets demonstrates the immeasurable public health and economic benefits of ANC. This article continues where Elliott and Nelson's 1993 Signal Processing Magazine article [1] and Elliott's 1997 50th anniversary commentary [2] on ANC left off, tracing the technical developments and applications in ANC spurred by the seminal texts of Nelson and Elliott (1991), Kuo and Morgan (1996), Hansen and Snyder (1996), and Elliott (2001) since the turn of the century. This article focuses on technical developments pertaining to real-world implementations, such as improving algorithmic convergence, reducing system latency, and extending control to non-stationary and/or broadband noise, as well as the commercial transition challenges from analog to digital ANC systems. Finally, open issues and the future of ANC in the era of artificial intelligence are discussed.

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