Tom Sullivan

Associate Teaching Professor – ECE Lecturer – Music
Department Electrical and Computer Engineering
Office A209 Hamerschlag Hall
Telephone (412)-268-3351
Fax (412)-268-1124

Research Interests

Though there is currently no funded research at CMU in this area, Dr.Sullivan's interests lie in the areas of signal processing for audio and music systems.

Audio Signal Processing

As the professional recording industry has grown, so has the complexity and quality of sound recording equipment. Research in audio signal processing serves the advancement of digital audio recording. From the need for lossless data compression, to higher quality filtering for A/D and D/A conversion, to better error correction coding for digital hard disk and magnetic tape systems (and compact discs), the research areas where electrical engineers can aid the entertainment industry are great.

Music Signal Processing

Signals from musical instruments are very complex waveforms. As the professional recording and performance industries demand higher quality synthesis of existing musical instruments, the study of new methods of instrument synthesis has increasing importance. In addition, the greater quality of films and television have increased the need for more realistic generation of sound effects. The use of digital sampling in the creation of music and sound effects merges the music and professional audio signal processing areas.

In addition, there is increasing desire for the control of music synthesizers by other existing musical instruments and new, non-standard "instruments" or "controllers". Pitch and expressive tracking of these instruments are vital to obtaining information from a performer that is capable of giving the performer high-level control over a music synthesizer.

In the News

  • ECE Outreach: bringing ECE to middle and high school
  • Faculty, Staff, Students Celebrate Semester's End at ECE Day
  • Two ECE Faculty Participate in New Music and Technology Program
  • DRS Technologies Awards ECE Projects
  • DRS Signal Solutions Sponsors ECE Course Contest
  • Students Find Recording Studio to be Interdisciplinary Hub
  • ECE Faculty Teach High School Workshops
  • SWE Connects High School Girls with Circuits and Careers
  • Robo-Race for 18-100 Puts High School Students on the ECE Track
  • Eta Kappa Nu Inducts Ten New Members Into Honor Society
  •  Tom Sullivan

    Carnegie Mellon, 1996

    Research Area

    Signals and Systems


    Audio signal processing, music and sound recording applications


    PhD, 1996
    Electrical and Computer Engineering
    Carnegie Mellon University

    MS, 1988
    Computer Music
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    BS, 1985
    Electrical Engineering
    Carnegie Mellon University