Using a low-power spiking continuous time neuron (SCTN) for sound signal processing

Moshe Bensimon, Shlomo Greenberg, Moshe Haiut

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This work presents a new approach based on a spiking neural network for sound preprocessing and classification. The proposed approach is biologically inspired by the biological neuron’s characteristic using spiking neurons, and Spike-Timing-Dependent Plasticity (STDP)-based learning rule. We propose a biologically plausible sound classification framework that uses a Spiking Neural Network (SNN) for detecting the embedded frequencies contained within an acoustic signal. This work also demonstrates an efficient hardware implementation of the SNN network based on the low-power Spike Continuous Time Neuron (SCTN). The proposed sound classification framework suggests direct Pulse Density Modulation (PDM) interfacing of the acoustic sensor with the SCTNbased network avoiding the usage of costly digital-to-analog conversions. This paper presents a new connectivity approach applied to Spiking Neuron (SN)-based neural networks. We suggest considering the SCTN neuron as a basic building block in the design of programmable analog electronics circuits. Usually, a neuron is used as a repeated modular element in any neural network structure, and the connectivity between the neurons located at different layers is well defined. Thus, generating a modular Neural Network structure composed of several layers with full or partial connectivity. The proposed approach suggests controlling the behavior of the spiking neurons, and applying smart connectivity to enable the design of simple analog circuits based on SNN. Unlike existing NN-based solutions for which the preprocessing phase is carried out using analog circuits and analog-to-digital conversion, we suggest integrating the preprocessing phase into the network. This approach allows referring to the basic SCTN as an analog module enabling the design of simple analog circuits based on SNN with unique inter-connections between the neurons. The efficiency of the proposed approach is demonstrated by implementing SCTN-based resonators for sound feature extraction and classification. The proposed SCTN-based sound classification approach demonstrates a classification accuracy of 98.73% using the Real-World Computing Partnership (RWCP) database.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1065
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalSensors (Switzerland)
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2 Feb 2021


  • Digital neuron
  • LIF model
  • MFCC
  • SCTN
  • SNN
  • STDP learning rule
  • Sound feature extraction
  • Spiking neuron

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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