Engine Fault Diagnosis by Audio Analysis

  • Michael McAndrew


I am currently completing an MCS in Computer Science. My masters dissertation is on Engine Fault Detection using audio analysis. The goal of the project is to find out, to what degree can Internal Combustion Engine health can be determined by using a smartphone microphone.

The idea originated from a tappet sound on my infamous 2002 Audi TT. At the time, I didn’t have enough knowledge or experience in the field to identify the sound. However, an expert mechanic could instantly identify the tappet sound and recommend a fix.

At the most basic level, this project could prove useful to create a tool that identifies basic faults for a non-mechanic. If the project is more successful, it may very well be able to identify faults from sound that even an expert mechanic is unable to notice.