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A model for the nonlinear mechanism responsible for cochlear amplification

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  • A nonlinear model for the mechanism responsible for the amplification of the sound wave in the ear is derived using the geometric and material properties of the system. The result is a nonlinear beam equation, with the nonlinearity appearing in a coefficient of the equation. Once derived, the beam problem is analyzed for various loading conditions. Based on this analysis it is seen that the mechanism is capable of producing a spatially localized gain, as required by any amplification mechanism, but it is also capable of increasing the spatial contrast in the signal.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 92C10, 74H10; Secondary: 35C20.

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