Oliver Thiergart, an employee of AudioLabs, received an award for the best doctoral thesis at the European Signal Processing Conference (EUSIPCO) in A Coruña in Spain this September, 2019. The results of his work play an important role for signal processing in consumer devices with multiple microphones, such as smartphones, tablets or cameras. Oliver’s dissertation “Flexible Multi-Microphone Acquisition and Processing of Spatial Sound Using Parametric Sound Field Representations” has been honored by the European Association for Signal Processing (EURASIP), the largest organization in that field in Europe. In his work, Oliver describes a method for flexible recording and processing of spatial sound with microphones. This means sound can be recorded and processed in the highest quality for different applications regardless of the microphone setup. In many technical devices, the mics are installed in unfavorable places, explains the audio expert. “Modern smartphones often have only a few microphones at suboptimal positions due to design constraints and costs, but still we need to be able to process the sound they capture for various applications,” he explains. In his doctoral thesis, he deals with solutions to this problem. In addition, the algorithm he developed helps with speech enhancement and in the suppression of disturbance and noise reduction. This is especially useful for voice assistants, which need to be able to identify their recognition words properly, even with music playback or background noise. Oliver’s algorithm is already being used in cameras and smart speakers. Here, you can find the thesis in the EURASIP Library.