Evaluation of a Helmet–Mounted Auditory System for Gunfire Localization

Évaluation d’un système auditif monté sur casque pour la localisation de coups de feu


  1. Burrell, C.
  2. Saunders, D.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Toronto, Toronto ONT (CAN)
The Localization Array Processor (LAP) is a system for acoustic localization of sources of rapid onset, short duration impulsive sounds, such as result from gunfire or explosions. The auditory environment is monitored by an array of helmet–mounted microphones. We report the results of a series of laboratory experiments to assess the performance characteristics of a prototype version of the LAP. Three tests of the system were carried out. First, its operation in backgrounds of stationary noise was studied. It was found that the system’s performance degraded rapidly as background noise levels increased, such that moderate levels of noise prevented the system from consistently identifying impulsive sounds in the environment. Second, tests of the direction–finding capability showed that the system was able to correctly identify the direction to the sound source in nearly 50% of cases, but that the angular resolution was not competitive with similar systems described in the literature. Finally, the recovery time of the system in a rapid fire scenario was studied, and it was found that it could detect an impulsive sound and refresh to a listening state in a few hundred milliseconds. In general, the system’s performance was satisfactory. Under optimal conditions it succeeded in identifying the azimuthal direction of origin of impulsive sounds, though the angular resolution provided by the current direction–finding algorithm is too coarse. The performance degraded in the pr

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Signal Processing;Situational Awareness;Acoustic Gunfire Localization;Sniper Detection
Report Number
DRDC-TORONTO-TM-2011-062 — Technical Memorandum
Date of publication
01 Dec 2011
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

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