Dillier Norbert

Group Leader

Prof. Dr.sc.techn. Norbert Dillier


Norbert Dillier

Name of the Institution

Laboratory of Experimental Audiology
ENT Department
University Hospital


Frauenklinikstr. 24


8091 Zürich


+41-44-255 58 01


Group Members

Main Field(s) of Research, Abstract

In the laboratory of experimental audiology, we work on projects to better understand and improve the function of auditory prostheses such as cochlear implants as well as conventional and implantable hearing aids.

The main goals are to enhance the speech discrimination performance, especially in noisy environments and to improve the sound quality for music perception with these devices.

New methods for programming and speech processor fitting especially for the very young children using objective electrophysiologic measurement procedures are a major area of research.

The investigation of the mechanical properties of the outer and middle ear using laser Doppler vibrometry and finite element modeling aims to further the basic understanding of these structures and to develop tools for better middle ear prostheses.

Main Fields of Research, Keywords

Cochlear Implant (CI), speech processing strategies, music perception optimization, neural response telemetry (NRT), modelling of excitation patterns, DSP speech coding algorithms, fitting strategies for speech processors and digital hearing instruments, Noise reduction algorithms, sound classification, Middle Ear Mechanics, Laser Doppler Vibrometry (LDV), finite element modelling (FEM), Audiological data processing

Special Techniques and Equipment

  • Audiological test and measurement setups for clinical and experimental studies
  • Free field testing setup for localization and speech in noise experiments
  • Software tools and expertise in software applications for audiological purposes

Education and Training

Postgraduate course in medical physics: lecture of medical acoustics, colloquium, exercises in biomedical engineering

Semester, diploma and PhD theses for students of the University and ETH of Zürich (biomedical engineering, informatics, biology, medicine)

Selected Publications

  • Appenrodt P, Dillier N, Gielen F (2012) Technische Grundlagen implantierbarer Neurostimulatoren. In: Classen J, Schnitzler A (eds) Interventionelle Neurophysiologie. Thieme, Stuttgart, pp 55-61
  • Blamey PJ, Maat B, Başkent D, Mawman D, Burke E, Dillier N, Beynon A, Kleine-Punte A, Govaerts P, Skarzynski P, Huber AM, Sterkers-Artières F, Van de Heyning P, O'Leary S, Fraysse B, Green K, Sterkers O, Venail F, Skarzynski H, Vincent C, Truy E, Dowell R, Bergeron F, Lazard DS (2015). A Retrospective Multicenter Study Comparing Speech Perception Outcomes for Bilateral Implantation and Bimodal Rehabilitation. Ear and Hearing:Epub ahead of print.
  • Brand Y, Senn P, Kompis M, Dillier N, Allum JHJ (2014). Cochlear implantation in children and adults in Switzerland. Swiss Medical Weekly, 144:w13909
  • Büchler M, Lai WK, Dillier N (2009) Musikwahrnehmung bei bimodaler Stimulation. Zeitschrift für Audiologie 48
  • Dillier N (2014) Anforderungen an die technische Signalverarbeitung für geschädigte Innenohren. Zeitschrift für Audiologie, 20(2):19-21.
  • Hey M, Böhnke B, Dillier N, Hoppe U, Eskilsson G, Löwgren K, Cullington H, Mauch H, Müller-Deile J (2015) The Intra-Cochlear Impedance-Matrix (IIM) test for the Nucleus ® cochlear implant. Biomed. Eng.-Biomed. Tech. 2014; 1-11
  • Huarte A, Ramos A, Morera C, Garcia-Ibáñez L, Battmer R, Dillier N, Wesarg T, Müller-Deile J, Hey M, Offeciers E, von Wallenberg E, Coudert C, Killian M. (2014) Evaluation of Neural Response Telemetry (NRT™) with focus on long-term rate adaptation over a wide range of stimulation rates. Cochlear Implants Int. 2014 May;15(3):136-44. doi: 10.1179/1754762814Y.0000000063
  • Kompis M, Pelizzone M, Dillier N, Allum J, DeMin N, Senn P (2012) Tinnitus before and 6 months after cochlear implantation. Audiol Neurootol 17: 161-168
  • Lai W, Dillier N (2009) Neural adaptation and the ECAP response threshold: a pilot study. Cochlear Implants International 10: 63-67
  • Lai WK, Dillier N (2011) RFcap: A software analysis tool for multichannel cochlear implant signals. Cochlear Implants Int epub ahead
  • Lai WK, Dillier N, Weber BP, Lenarz T, Battmer R, Gantz B, Brown C, Cohen N, Waltzman S, Skinner M, Holden L, Cowan R, Busby P, Killian M (2009) TNRT profiles with the nucleus research platform 8 system. Int J Audiol 48: 645-654
  • Laske RD, Veraguth D, Dillier N, Binkert A, Holzmann D, Huber AM (2009) Subjective and objective results after bilateral cochlear implantation in adults. Otology and Neurotology 30: 313-318
  • Luts H, Eneman K, Wouters J, Schulte M, Vormann M, Buechler M, Dillier N, Houben R, Dreschler WA, Froehlich M, Puder H, Grimm G, Hohmann V, Leijon A, Lombard A, Mauler D, Spriet A, Lai WK, Weber BP, Lenarz T, Battmer R, Gantz B, Brown C, Cohen N, Waltzman S, Skinner M, Holden L, Cowan R, Busby P, Killian M (2010) Multicenter evaluation of signal enhancement algorithms for hearing aids. J Acoust Soc Am 127: 1491-1505
  • Mueller MF, Kegel A, Schimmel SM, Dillier N, Hofbauer M (2012) Localization of virtual sound sources with bilateral hearing aids in realistic acoustical scenes. J Acoust Soc Am 131: 4732-4742
  • Mueller MF, Meisenbacher K, Lai WK, Dillier N (2013) Sound localization with bilateral cochlear implants in noise: How much do head movements contribute to localization? Cochlear Implants International , Epub ahead of print: 1-7
  • Omran S, Lai WK, Büchler M, Dillier N (2011) Semitone frequency mapping to improve music representation for nucleus cochlear implants. EURASIP Journal on Audio, Speech and MusicProcessing 2011/2: 1-11
  • Sandmann P, Dillier N, Eichele T, Meyer M, Kegel A, Pascual-Marqui RD, Marcar VL, Jancke L, Debener S (2012) Visual activation of auditory cortex reflects maladaptive plasticity in cochlear implant users. Brain 135: 555-568
  • Sandmann P, Eichele T, Buechler M, Debener S, Jancke L, Dillier N, Hugdahl K, Meyer M (2009) Evaluation of evoked potentials to dyadic tones after cochlear implantation. Brain 132: 1967-1979
  • Sandmann P, Kegel A, Eichele T, Dillier N, Lai W, Bendixen A, Debener S, Jancke L, Meyer M (2010) Neurophysiological evidence of impaired musical sound perception in cochlear-implant users. Clin Neurophysiol 121: 2070-2082
  • Wesarg T, Battmer RD, Garrido LC, Dillier N, Garcia-Ibanez L, Hey M, Macias AR, Irujo AH, Morsnowski A, Offeciers EF, Zarowski A, Pesch J, Rypkema G, Smoorenburg GF (2010) Effect of changing pulse rate on profile parameters of perceptual thresholds and loudness comfort levels and relation to ECAP thresholds in recipients of the Nucleus CI24RE device. International Journal of Audiology 49: 775-787


University of Zurich, European Union, private endowments and donations, industry

  • Biomedical Engineering (ETH and University of Zürich)
  • Psychological Institute UZH, Neuroplasticity and Learning in the Normal Aging Brain
    Centre of Competence (INAPIC)
  • Center for Neurosciences University of Zürich (ZNZ)
  • Center for integrative human physiology, University of Zurich (ZIHP)
  • Several clinical research groups in the field of Cochlear Implants worldwide


Link to "Forschungsdatenbank" of the University