In this paper, a model of the harp plucking is developed. It is split into two successive time phases, the sticking and the slipping phases, and uses a mechanical description of the human finger's behavior. The parameters of the model are identified through measurements of the finger/string displacements during the interaction. The validity of the model is verified using a configurable and repeatable robotic finger, enhanced with a silicone layer. A parametric study is performed to investigate the influence of the model's parameters on the free oscillations of the string. As a result, a direct implementation of the model produces an accurate simulation of a string response to a given finger motion, as compared to experimental data. The set of parameters that govern the plucking action is divided into two groups: Parameters controlled by the harpist and parameters intrinsic to the plucking. The former group and to a lesser extent the latter highly influence the initial conditions of the string vibrations. The simulations of the string's free oscillations highlight the large impact the model parameters have on the sound produced and therefore allows the understanding of how different players on the same instrument can produce a specific/personal sound quality.

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