About the project

What if it was possible to detect whether someone has COVID-19 or not, just from the sounds of their coughing or talking? This is the main goal of the project “Detecção de COVID-19 a partir de tosse e fala” (“COVID-19 detection from coughs and speech”), developed by a team of researchers from Instituto Superior Técnico and INESC-ID.

Using Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, the project aims to develop a robust system that helps to identify who is infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, through recorded voice and cough. The main purpose of this project is to be one more clue that can indicate the disease or even be combined with other biomarkers.
To this end, it is crucial to collect an extensive dataset with representative examples of speech and simulated coughs and snores from both COVID-19 positive and negative individuals. The participation of the Técnico community is essential and warmly appreciated.

Several articles published on the subject suggest the hypothesis that even asymptomatic patients reveal changes in their voice, due to the impact of the virus on the lungs and vocal cords, showing slight differences when compared with a healthy person. Although this difference is not decipherable to the human ear, an AI model may be able to detect it.

The project is coordinated by Isabel Trancoso, Técnico professor at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (DEEC) and researcher at INESC-ID.




  • Instituto Superior Técnico
  • Instituto de Engenharia de Sistemas e Computadores – Investigação e Desenvolvimento (INESC-ID)


  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Vocal changes