Miguel Carvalho graduated in Musical Sciences at Universidade do Minho in 2010, and successfully presented his Master’s thesis titled, “Acoustic characterization of the Mafra carillon bells” in 2012, under the supervision of Prof. Vincent Debut, at Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas (FCSH), Universidade Nova de Lisboa (UNL). In 2010 he joined INET-md (FCSH/UNL) and Applied Dynamics Laboratory (Campus Tecnológico e Nuclear/Instituto Superior Técnico/Universidade Técnica de Lisboa) in the project PTDC/EAT-MMU/104255/2008. Currently he continues his work at the same institutions towards his PhD in Musical Sciences, with a Grant from the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) within the PhD awarded program, “Development of advanced methods in musical acoustics for tuning and restoration of historical carillons”. His main research interests are music acoustics and organology, in particular experimental modal analysis, physical modelling and optimization of musical instruments. His research has been published in book chapters, international peer-reviewed journals and international conference proceedings and has received two awards by the International Symposium on Musical Acoustics (2014) and Portuguese Museology Association (2015).
Development of advanced methods in musical acoustics for tuning and restoration of historical carillons
The carillons of Mafra are outstanding musical instruments which form the largest surviving 18th century carillons in Europe. They represent a collection of bells of great historical significance but have been neglected for decades. Recently, their tuning – which remains over time - has been asserted and evident tuning problems were highlighted. With consideration to both the historical perspective and the performance oriented standpoint, the proposed multidisciplinary work aims to develop objective, physics-based techniques to achieve adequate tuning of historical carillons without destructive modifications performed on bells. Multi-modal tuning will be based on structural modification concepts, combined with optimization procedures in order to establish the shape and location of the tuning devices, and the overall predictions will be compared with experiments. Outcome of the project will be an instrumental tuning methodology, adequate to many carillons of historical significance and the possibility of properly tuning the Mafra carillons for satisfying musical performances.