14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)

San Francisco, CA, USA
August 1-7, 1999


F0 Peak Delay: When, Where, and Why it Occurs

Yi Xu

Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA

Peak delay refers to the phenomenon that an F0 peak sometimes occurs after the syllable it is associated with. This study investigates the relationship between tone, speaking rate and peak delay in Mandarin. Sentences containing H, R, or weakened H (h) were recorded at normal, fast and slow speaking rates. At normal rate, peak delay occurred regularly in both R and h but only occasionally in H; at slow rate, peak delay continued to occur regularly in R but only occasionally in h and rarely in H; at fast rate, peak delay occurred not only regularly in R and h, but also frequently in H. Peak-alignment analyses revealed that peak delay tended to occur whenever F0 rose sharply near the syllable offset. The results were interpreted as indicating that peak delay is due to an articulatory constraint that limits how fast the larynx can reverse the direction of pitch movement.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Xu, Yi (1999): "F0 peak delay: when, where, and why it occurs", In ICPhS-14, 1881-1884.