Another term for the eardrum is the tympanic membrane, which is the scientific term for the eardrum. The tympanic membrane is a circular layer of tissue that separates the outer ear from the middle ear. It is incredibly thin and only measures roughly 0.1 millimeter thick.
The tympanic membrane consists of three smaller layers, which include the outer cutaneous layer, a fibrous middle layer and a mucous-membrane inner layer within the middle ear. The entire membrane is held in place, between the outer and middle ear, by cartilage. The cartilage ensures that the tympanic membrane does not vibrate too much when sound waves hit it, so that the sound waves can be transferred to the middle ear.