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XC: Commercialisation Activities


Commercialising research outcomes enables the CRC’s research innovations to be delivered to people who will use them such as new technologies for hearing devices and tools for clinicians.

Every HEARing CRC research project must consider the likely benefit of its research outcomes to each of our end-users, and detail this in a commercialisation or utilisation strategy. This strategy must also consider how to best translate and deliver that information for the end user to maximise impact. There are two key approaches to translation within the HEARing CRC.


These strategies are reviewed regularly by the Board of Directors and may include product development or upgrade as well as development of new technologies.

In most cases, commercialisation is anticipated through commercial arrangements with industry Members directly involved as project participants. Distribution occurs via:

  • direct sales and licensing through our commercial arm, HEARworks Pty Ltd (some innovations are provided under pre-agreed licence to Cochlear Ltd or to Sivantos Pty Ltd);
  • partnership with our Members (e.g. Australian Hearing) in joint activities; or
  • the involvement of third parties (e.g. Frye Electronics Inc).

Alternatively, technical reports are used to disseminate research project outcomes to our Members (in the case of trade secrets and other commercially-sensitive know how). In many cases IP is not of a nature that can be codified into patent applications, but rather forms know-how and show-how which is provided as Technical Reports to assist research and development. Research outcomes in the field of cochlear implants are directly provided to Cochlear Ltd for worldwide application, providing a global audience for Australian research. Similarly, research reports relevant to the hearing aid field are provided to Sivantos Pty Ltd.

Clinical Application

This type of uptake and use is achieved through our communication and education activities, often in association with our clinical and professional Members.

Education activities

  • HEARnet Learning provides accredited online training modules for Continuing Professional Development of hearing healthcare professionals – this is used to promulgate new practices through interactive lectures and delivery of evidence-based clinical guidelines; and
  • providing professional training to surgeons and clinicians through the Visiting Implant Specialists to Australia (VISTA) program run by Cochlear Ltd; this facilitates development and expansion of markets for our commercial products

Communication activities

  • HEARnet Online provides evidence-based, independent information to the public; and
  • presentations at conferences and publications in peer-reviewed, non-peer reviewed and industry/trade journals.

The current suite of HEARing CRC products and services are available from the HEARworks website.

An overview of our current commercialisation activities are shown below.

XC1 Clinical Trials and Product Validation

clinical This project is focused on implementing, managing and accessing clinical studies arising from HEARing CRC research, and other collaborations with its Members and third-party clients.

Project Leader: Kerrie Plant

XC2 Hearing Aid Technology Development

This project oversees the development of hearing aid technologies identified as collaborative projects with its Members and third-party clients.

Project Leader: Adjunct Prof. Harvey Dillon, Dr Jorge Mejia

XC3 HEARLab Technology Development

HEARLabThis project is tasked with developing new modules for HEARLab – a portable device that allows hearing tests to be delivered to clinicians in the form of new software modules without the need to update equipment hardware.

HEARLab®’s first first module incorporates two different electrophysiological hearing assessments:

  • Aided Cortical Assessment (ACA)
  • Cortical Threshold Estimation (CTE).

New HEARLab® modules being developed by this project are:

  • Automatic cortical audiometer
  • Automatic ABR audiometer

Project Leader: Teck Loi

XC4 Binaural Signal Processing Applications

This project is focused on the translation and assessment of bilaterial signal processing algorithms for inclusion in sound processing technologies such as hearing aids and cochlear implants.

The binaural beamformer, developed by the HEARing CRC, is designed to reduce interfering noise that arrives from different spatial locations to the main talker of interest, whilst preserving spatial cues and high sound quality.

It uses signals from both sides of the head to create a narrower “beam of interest” for which signals are retained than is possible by using directional microphones working in isolation on each side of the head.

The video above was recorded in a cafeteria at the National Acoustic Laboratories in Sydney Australia. It demonstrates the differences between three microphone processing methods: omnidirectional, traditional directional (cardioid) microphone, and the HEARing CRC binaural beamformer.

Project Leaders: Dr Jorge Mejia, Dr Richard van Hoesel


XC5 Speech Referenced Dynamic Compression Limiting

Noise reduction for improving loudness comfort and acoustic safety


For people listening to electronically reproduced speech, such as headset, hearing aid, and hearing protector users, it is desirable that the reproduced noise levels are well controlled.  Using this novel method called Speech Referenced Limiting (SRL) noise levels in audio signals are limited in level with reference to the conveyed speech levels.

In principle, this method provides the greatest limiting of noise for the least limiting of speech making it arguably the optimum method for limiting noise for listeners of electronically reproduced speech.

Project Leader: Dr Michael Fisher

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