The Science of Sound

It is National Science Week this week and I am bringing my “Science of Sound” workshop around schools in county Galway for the next two weeks as part of the Galway Science and Technology Festival.  The fun kicked off today in Gaelscoil Mhic Amhlaigh where we learned about sound, had great fun making, feeling and even seeing sound and its effect on some different materials.

You can expect plenty of “sound” posts on the blog for the next few weeks, as I will be sharing lots of experiments, facts and information… but today I thought I would share five fun facts about Sound!

Did you know

photo credit: jvverde via photopin cc
  • … sound waves travel in water at a speed of nearly one mile a second, which is more than four times faster than sound travels through air?
  • … a bat can detect an object as small as a human hair using echolocation?
  • … thunder is the sound made by lightning? Sound travels in air at a speed of almost one mile in five seconds.  If you count the seconds between seeing the lightning and hearing the thunder you can work out the distance from the source of the thunder! For example, if you count ten seconds between the lightning and the thunder then you can tell the storm is about two miles away!
  • … the loud noise created by a cracking whip is due to the fact that the tip of the whip is moving so fast that it breaks the speed of sound?
  • … the scientific study of sound is called acoustics?


Science blogger and writer; Owner of Dr. How's Science Wows; Mother of three junior scientists who have taught me that to be a great scientist you need to look at life through the eyes of a child!

2 thoughts on “The Science of Sound

  • November 11, 2013 at 9:32 pm

    Well I knew that about counting between the lightning and thunder because I’ve had the pleasure of watching Winnie The Pooh’s Super Sleuths a million times but the other facts are news to me. Interesting!

    • November 12, 2013 at 5:22 pm

      Aha Joanna you have found my big science reference… Winnie the Pooh ;0) Actually we do have the super sleuths on DVD an I remember that one! Great way for children to learn!

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