Phenomena

Ionic Sound

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So, as we learned previously, sound can actually travel through space. But the recordings our spacecraft send us from other planets or from the edge of the Solar System aren’t really that kind of sound. Acoustic waves require a medium; they travel when particles bump into one another, which, given the sparseness of space, means that only very low frequency sounds can travel. But space has a lot of ions and plasmas – charged particles like electrons and protons – and those particles can interact without physically contacting one another. Instead their motion causes a changing magnetic field that affects nearby particles, which in turn affect more particles (and so on). This transmits what’s called ionic sound. Check out the video above to hear some awesome examples of the ionic sounds of our solar system! (Video credit: The Point Studios)

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