Research

Sounds of Champagne

A glass of champagne.

Lean in to a glass of champagne and you’ll hear a soft chorus of sound as the bubbles pop. Recently, researchers determined the specific mechanism in the process that’s responsible for that audible sound.

Bubbles pop when the thin film of liquid separating them from the atmosphere drains away. The moment the film opens corresponds to the start of the sound, as overpressurized air inside the bubble has a chance to escape. The researchers found that the bubble behaves like a open-ended Helmholtz resonator, and by the time the sound emission ends, the bubble’s collapse has barely begun. (Image credit: L. Lyshøj; research credit: M. Poujol et al.)

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