Acoustically Goosing a Moose

Moose news in a master’s thesis: “Evaluating the Behavioural Response of Moose (Alces alces) to Acoustic Stimuli,” Denice Lodnert, master’s thesis in biology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, 2021. (Thanks to Sven Swahn for bringing this to our attention.) The author reports: “In this study, I investigated how wild moose (Alces alces) that visited saltlick-stones […]

“We Did Not Know Then What Surprises Awaited Us”

Many years ago, T.C. Poulter revealed some loud surprises from Antarctica, in the study “Arctic and Antarctic Acoustics,” T.C. Poulter, Stanford Research Institute Biological Sonar Lab, 1966. Poulter reports: …first observed in the Antarctic in 1934 during the construction of a tunnel through the very porous, coarsely crystalline snow for communication during the winter night […]

Acoustical Analysis of Shouting Into the Wind

The physics of shouting into the wind are now slightly better plumbed. Details emerge in the study “Effects of flow gradients on directional radiation of human voice,” Ville Pulkki [pictured here, performing the experiment], Timo Lähivaara, and Ilkka Huhtakallio, The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 143, no. 2, 2018, pp. 1173-1181. (Thanks to […]

Acoustical Watermelon Studies: Reaching for More Than What’s on Tap

To know whether a watermelons is ripe — before cutting into the melon — is a dream brought to exciting levels by generations of scientists, building on the wisdom and wishfulness of their ancestors. Here are three of the juicier studies published in recent times. Acoustical Watermelon Study (1998) “Study on acoustic characteristics of the […]

Those peculiar Harvard Sentences, developed in a basement

Sarah Zhang writes, in Gizmodo, about how “The ‘Harvard Sentences’ Secretly Shaped the Development of Audio Tech“: During World War II, the boiler room under Harvard’s Memorial Hall was turned into a secretive wartime research lab. Here, volunteers were subjected to hours of noise as scientists tested military communications systems. Out of this came the […]

The Acoustics of Breaking Chopsticks

What are the acoustics of breaking a bamboo chopstick? According to a new paper by physicist Tzay-Ming Hong and his colleagues at National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan, it’s kind of like the acoustics of breaking a bundle spaghetti: they both apparently resemble the Gutenberg–Richter scaling law, which relates earthquake magnitude to the frequency of earthquakes with at […]

Testing the Green-Cheese Theory of the Moon

Edward Schreiber and Orson Anderson once tested whether the Moon really could be made of green cheese. Caltech planetary scientist David Stephenson discussed that achievement, in Box 1 of his article in Physics Today in November 2014. In their 1970 article in the journal Science, Schreiber and Anderson compared the speeds of sound waves in rocks that were […]