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Interesting fact

Ultrasound generator/speaker systems are sold with claims that they frighten away rodents and insects, but there is no scientific evidence that the devices work; controlled tests have shown that rodents quickly learn that the speakers are harmless.

In echo-sounding the reflections from ultrasound pulses that are bounced off objects (for example the bottom of the sea, fish etc.) are picked up. The reflections are timed and since their speed is known, the distance to the object can be found. This information can be built into a picture of the object that reflects the ultrasound pulses.


Ships on the ocean make use of the reflecting properties of sound waves to determine the depth of the ocean. A sound wave is transmitted and bounces off the seabed. Because the speed of sound is known and the time lapse between sending and receiving the sound can be measured, the distance from the ship to the bottom of the ocean can be determined, This is called sonar, which stands from So und N avigation A nd R anging.


Animals like dolphins and bats make use of sounds waves to find their way. Just like ships on the ocean, bats use sonar to navigate. Ultrasound waves that are sent out are reflected off the objects around the animal. Bats, or dolphins, then use the reflected sounds to form a “picture” of their surroundings. This is called echolocation.

A ship sends a signal to the bottom of the ocean to determine the depth of the ocean. The speed of sound in sea water is 1450 m . s - 1 . If the signal is received 1,5 seconds later, how deep is the ocean at that point?

  1. s = 1450 m . s - 1 t = 1 , 5 s there and back t = 0 , 75 s one way D = ?
  2. Distance = speed × time D = s × t = 1450 m . s - 1 × 0 , 75 s = 1087 , 5 m

Intensity of sound (not included in caps - advanced)

Advanced section

This section is more advanced than required and is best revisited for interest only when you are comfortable with concepts like power and logarithms.

Intensity is one indicator of amplitude. Intensity is the energy transmitted over a unit of area each second.


Intensity is defined as:

Intensity = energy time × area = power area

By the definition of intensity, we can see that the units of intensity are

Joules s · m 2 = Watts m 2

The unit of intensity is the decibel (symbol: dB). This reduces to an SI equivalent of W · m - 2 .

The average threshold of hearing is 10 - 12 W · m - 2 . Below this intensity, the sound is too soft for the ear to hear. The threshold of pain is 1 . 0 W · m - 2 . Above this intensity a sound is so loud it becomes uncomfortable for the ear.

Notice that there is a factor of 10 12 between the thresholds of hearing and pain. This is one reason we define the decibel (dB) scale.

In this way we can compress the whole hearing intensity scale into a range from 0 dB to 120 dB.

Examples of sound intensities.
Source Intensity (dB) Times greater than hearing threshold
Rocket Launch 180 10 18
Jet Plane 140 10 14
Threshold of Pain 120 10 12
Rock Band 110 10 11
Subway Train 90 10 9
Factory 80 10 8
City Traffic 70 10 7
Normal Conversation 60 10 6
Library 40 10 4
Whisper 20 10 2
Threshold of hearing 0 0

Questions & Answers

Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
types of nano material
abeetha Reply
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
many many of nanotubes
what is the k.e before it land
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
I'm interested in nanotube
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
Ramkumar Reply
what is nano technology
Sravani Reply
what is system testing?
The fundamental frequency of a sonometer wire streached by a load of relative density 's'are n¹ and n² when the load is in air and completly immersed in water respectively then the lation n²/na is
Mukesh Reply
Properties of longitudinal waves
Sharoon Reply

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Source:  OpenStax, Siyavula textbooks: grade 10 physical science [caps]. OpenStax CNX. Sep 30, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11305/1.7
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