Apple is Working on a Microspeaker for Its Increasingly Compact Devices

Apple is Working on a Microspeaker for Its Increasingly Compact Devices

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Apple has filed a patent detailing a new microspeaker that could be used in its increasingly compact devices. The patent entitled, 'HALBACH ARRAY AUDIO TRANSDUCER' was filed September 3, 2015 and lists Alexander V. Salvatti as its inventor.

Apple notes that portable devices such as the iPhone have become more and more compact. As the form factor shrinks, system enclosures become smaller and there is less space available for speaker integration.

In the case of an audio speaker having a voicecoil suspended below a diaphragm within a gap of a magnetic return structure, precious space is occupied by the magnetic return structure that is required to direct the magnetic field produced by the magnet around the voicecoil. Since the voicecoil and the magnetic return structure extend along the axis of sound emission, they take up z-height and limit the degree to which the speaker thickness can be reduced.

Apple proposes eliminating the magnetic return structure and helical voicecoil which allows for the vertical thickness of the speaker to be reduced.

The voicecoil may be integrated along a surface of the diaphragm and configured to interact with a magnetic field produced by a magnetic array such that the voicecoil operates within the fringe flux of the magnetic field and the thickness of the speaker is limited only by the magnetic array thickness and the excursion clearance of the diaphragm.

Apple is Working on a Microspeaker for Its Increasingly Compact Devices

Here's the details of one embodiment:

An electromagnetic transducer for sound generation includes a diaphragm configured to move along a central axis. The diaphragm may include a dielectric surface orthogonal to the central axis, and a voicecoil may be coupled with the dielectric surface. The voicecoil may have a conductive winding on the diaphragm, e.g., with one or more conductive paths running along the dielectric surface. Furthermore, the electromagnetic transducer may include a magnetic Halbach array having at least three magnetized portions arranged side-by-side. Each magnetized portion may extend along a respective longitudinal axis and produce respective magnetic field lines perpendicular to the respective longitudinal axis. Thus, the magnetic Halbach array may direct the magnetic field lines toward the voicecoil such that the magnetic field lines intersect the voicecoil to cause a Lorentz force to move the diaphragm along the central axis. The magnetic field lines that intersect the voicecoil may run parallel to the dielectric surface and perpendicular to the conductive winding.

The very technical patent can be read at the link below...

Read More [via Patently Apple]

Apple is Working on a Microspeaker for Its Increasingly Compact Devices

Apple is Working on a Microspeaker for Its Increasingly Compact Devices
Big Sheepdog - August 1, 2016 at 7:38pm
I like the fact the phone in the drawing looks like a 3GS
Mang Domeng - August 1, 2016 at 6:49pm
Nice! A mini plannar magnetic speaker! That's a cool technology! Planars are found in expensive hi-res planar magnetic headphones. If this will be produced it will be a nice feature and the components can be more thinner than ordinary mobile phone speakers.
Well... - August 1, 2016 at 4:11pm
Let me guess, they want to make it as small as the 4s again???
Great! - August 1, 2016 at 4:27pm
No they want to make it thinner some more.
Butterspider - August 1, 2016 at 5:53pm
They want to make it thin enough to remove the lightning connector!