The Sound of Sleepy

Australian researchers develop novel method for measuring fatigue through voice

(RxWiki News) A recent report from the University of Melbourne outlines the effects of sustained wakefulness on speech and details a novel concept into acoustically analyze fatigue through speech.

The study involved 18 young adults who provided speech samples at two-hour intervals during a 24 hour period in which they stayed awake.

Acoustician Adam Vogel and cohorts analyzed various components of speech, including pause length and the time it took to complete spoken tasks.

As fatigue advances, they found, participants had less control over the muscles that produce speech.

Vogel said the findings could be useful to employers and military leaders concerned with managing fatigue over long shifts. He said there's increasing interest in developing non-invasive tools to measure fatigue in medical and workplace settings where long shifts of more than 36 hours are common.

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Review Date: 
December 23, 2010