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Broadband Constrained Minimum Variance Beamformer

VOCAL’s Broadband Constrained Minimum Variance Beamformer solution offers optimal noise reduction for speech quality enhancement applications in terms of maximizing the Signal to Interference Ratio (SINR). Our algorithm minimizes the noise power, thus minimizing the variance of the output with respect to the speech signal VOCAL’s Minimum Variance Beamforming solution is extremely robust to give you the best possible speech quality enhancement in even the most challenging environments.

We discuss how to derive this problem and find the optimal solution. For more  detailed information or to discuss your beamforming application requirements, please contact us directly.

Problem Derivation

The output of our beamformer can be represented via:


Where ѡ→+ is our beamformer weight vector, which is:


Where J is the number of taps per microphone FIR filter, and M is the number of microphones. In other words, each ѡi holds the ith tap weight for each microphone m. Similarly, we aggregate our microphone signal as:


Where Ts is the sampling period, so that x(t– iTsholds the data point on the ith tap of each microphone m. Our microphone signal is assumed to be of the form:


Where sm(t) = s(t) e jѡ (t-(Τm(Ɵ) + iTs)), km and vm are statistically independent signal, interference, and noise at the mth microphone. The term jѡ (t-(Τm(Ɵ) + iTs)) is our model for a complex plane wave arriving from angle Ɵ at the ith sampling instant. Our optimal ѡ→+ is found by maximizing the signal power with respect to the noise and interference power:


Where Rss and Rvv represent the autocorrelations of the signal and interference plus noise respectively, and Eq8 represents complex conjugation. To maximize this function, we want to make the denominator small. Hence, our objective function becomes:


At the same time, we can make the numerator large. Hence we introduce a constraint:


Essentially, this says that we are gaining our desired signal power ѡ→H+Rss ѡ→+ by G. For our beamformer, we want to pass the signal coming from Ɵl with frequency ѡ with a power gain G, while minizing the noise power. Therefore, our constraint is written as:


Where d→+(Ɵl, ѡ) is our array manifold vector, which describes how the beamformer will respond to our signal model, the plane wave, arriving from angle Ɵ with frequency ѡ. It is written as:


In fact, this is entirely equivalent to our previous constraint, because in the special case of a point source signal we have:


Where outer-product denotes the outer product. In other words, we can represent our power ratio as:


Hence, we still want to make the denominator small and the gain the numerator to a large value G. Hence our optimization problem becomes:



Solution Derivation

Going further, we will use the notation CH = d→H(Ɵl, ѡ→). The solution to this optimization problem can be found by first forming the Lagrangian:


Due to the quadratic form ѡH+ Rvv ѡ→+ present, this function is clearly convex, therefore if we set the derivative equal to zero and solve, we will assuredly obtain the global minimum:


The minimum is then found:


Since the constraint equation says CH ѡ→+  = G→+ , we plug in ѡ→+ from the above result into this constraint equation to obtain:


Hence, we plug in our result for λ into ѡ→+ = -R-1vv  :


Hence our solution is:


More Information

VOCAL Technologies, Ltd.
520 Lee Entrance, Suite 202
Amherst New York 14228
Phone: +1-716-688-4675
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