Sound visualised in 2500 flames

Using an array of 2500 flames, a Masters student in Denmark has created a stunning way to visualise sound.

(Screenshot by Michelle Starr/CNET Australia)

Using an array of 2500 flames, a Masters student in Denmark has created a stunning way to visualise sound.

Although we can't see sound — at least not without some help — it's still a physical phenomenon, producing waves of varying pressure in the air. There are a number of ways to turn them visible , but we've never seen any quite like this.

Sune Nielsen, a Masters student in physics and member of the Physics Show at Aarhus University, Denmark, has created what he calls the Pyro Board — an audio wave visualiser that uses flames to show the varying frequencies of sound.

It operates on the same principle as a Rubens' Tube. This is a tube of metal with a series of holes drilled along one side. Gas is fed into the tube at a controlled rate — much like a Bunsen burner — and the holes are lit, creating a series of flames. When you play a constant audio frequency through the tube, it creates a standing wave, which is replicated by the flames as fed by the air in the tube.

Now imagine a flat board drilled with 2500 holes — 50 per side — along the same principle. This is Nielsen's Pyro Board. When sound is fed into the box, the flames react, creating a stunning pyrotechnic display.

We don't recommend that you try this one at home, but it sure is tempting. The music starts at about 3:38 in the video below, and you can see more videos on the Physics Show YouTube page.

Via www.thisiscolossal.com

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About the author

Michelle Starr is the tiger force at the core of all things. She also writes about cool stuff and apps as CNET Australia's Crave editor. But mostly the tiger force thing.

 

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