Bose uses headphone technology to reduce in-car noise

Bose uses headphone technology to reduce in-car noise
Bose has developed QuietComfort Road Noise Control (RNC) to help global vehicle manufacturers manage sound inside cars, trucks, and SUVs. Bose QuietComfort RNC solves an issue that car makers and drivers have been dealing with for decades: how to minimise unwanted sound in the cabin caused by driving over rough roads, grooved concrete, and uneven pavement.

Conventional approaches to solving this problem include adding thick insulation to the vehicle body, using customised tires that trade drive performance for lower noise, and other passive countermeasures that can increase vehicle weight and drive down fuel efficiency, while delivering limited effectiveness. QuietComfort RNC does it by using the vehicle’s existing sound system.

“For years, we’ve been asked why we can’t simply adapt our noise cancelling headphone technology to vehicle cabins for a quieter driving experience,” said John Feng, manager, Bose Automotive, Active Sound Management Solutions. “But we know it’s much more difficult to control noise in a large space like a car cabin compared to the relatively small area around your ears. However, through research advances and our relentless efforts to solve tough problems, we’ve achieved a level of road noise reduction that sets Bose apart from competitive offerings.”

Bose QuietComfort RNC uses a combination of accelerometers, proprietary signal-processing software, microphones, and the vehicle’s audio system to electronically control unwanted sound. Accelerometers mounted on the vehicle body enable a Bose algorithm to continuously measure vibrations that create noise. This information is then used to calculate an acoustic cancellation signal, which is delivered through the vehicle’s speakers to reduce the targeted noise. Microphones placed inside the cabin monitor residual noise levels, allowing the system to adapt the control signal for optimized performance over different road surfaces, while automatically adjusting over time as the vehicle ages.

Bose will collaborate with manufacturers during the vehicle development process to custom-engineer QuietComfort RNC into the car. Tuning adjustments can be made quickly and easily throughout the development cycle, and the solution is available for vehicles with or without Bose premium sound systems. QuietComfort RNC is planned to be in production models by the end of 2021.

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