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CPO Science

Foundations of
Physics

Unit 5, Chapter

Unit 5: Waves and Sound


Chapter 15 Sound
15.1 Properties of Sound
15.2 Sound Waves
15.3 Sound, Perception, and
Music

Chapter 15 Objectives
1. Explain how the pitch, loudness, and speed of sound
are related to properties of waves.
2. Describe how sound is created and recorded.
3. Give examples of refraction, diffraction, absorption,
and reflection of sound waves.
4. Explain the Doppler effect.
5. Give a practical example of resonance with sound
waves.
6. Explain the relationship between the superposition
principle and Fouriers theorem.
7. Describe how the meaning of sound is related to
frequency and time.
8. Describe the musical scale, consonance, dissonance,
and beats in terms of sound waves.

Chapter 15 Vocabulary Terms

pressure
frequency
pitch
superpositio
n principle
decibel
speaker
acoustics
microphone
fundamental
wavelength
stereo

Doppler
effect
supersonic
frequency
spectrum
shock wave
resonance
node
antinode
dissonance
harmonic
reverberation

note
sonogram
Fouriers
theorem
rhythm
musical scale
cochlea
consonance
longitudinal
wave
beats
octave

15.1 Properties of Sound


Key Question:
What is sound and
how do we hear it?

*Students read Section


15.1 AFTER
Investigation 15.1

15.1 Properties of Sound


If you could see the
atoms, the difference
between high and low
pressure is not as great.
Here, it is exaggerated.

15.2 The frequency of sound


We hear frequencies of sound
as having different pitch.
A low frequency sound has a
low pitch, like the rumble of a
big truck.
A high-frequency sound has a
high pitch, like a whistle or
siren.
In speech, women have higher
fundamental frequencies than
men.

15.1 Complex sound

Common Sounds and their


Loudness

15.1 Loudness
Every increase of 20
dB, means the
pressure wave is
10 times greater in
amplitude.

Logarithmi
c scale

Linear
scale

Decibels (dB) Amplitude

20

10

40

100

60

1,000

80

10,000

100

100,000

120

1,000,000

15.1 Sensitivity of the ear


How we hear the loudness
of sound is affected by the
frequency of the sound as
well as by the amplitude.
The human ear is most
sensitive to sounds
between 300 and 3,000 Hz.
The ear is less sensitive to
sounds outside this range.
Most of the frequencies
that make up speech are
between 300 and 3,000 Hz.

15.1 How sound is created


The human voice is a
complex sound that starts in
the larynx, a small structure
at the top of your windpipe.
The sound that starts in the
larynx is changed by
passing through openings in
the throat and mouth.
Different sounds are made
by changing both the
vibrations in the larynx and
the shape of the openings.

15.1 Recording sound


1. A common way to record sound starts with
a microphone. A microphone transforms a
sound wave into an electrical signal with
the same pattern of oscillation.

15.1 Recording sound


2. In modern digital recording, a sensitive
circuit converts analog sounds to digital
values between 0 and 65,536.

15.1 Recording sound


3. Numbers correspond to the amplitude of
the signal and are recorded as data. One
second of compact-disk-quality sound is a
list of 44,100 numbers.

15.1 Recording sound


4. To play the sound back, the string of numbers is
read by a laser and converted into electrical
signals again by a second circuit which reverses
the process of the previous circuit.

15.1 Recording sound


5. The electrical signal is amplified until it is
powerful enough to move the coil in a
speaker and reproduce the sound.

15.2 Sound Waves


Key Question:
Does sound behave
like other waves?

*Students read Section


15.2 BEFORE
Investigation 15.2

15.2 Sound Waves


1. Sound has both frequency (that we hear
directly) and wavelength (demonstrated
by simple experiments).
2. The speed of sound is frequency times
wavelength.
3. Resonance happens with sound.
4. Sound can be reflected, refracted, and
absorbed and also shows evidence of
interference and diffraction.

15.2 Sound Waves


A sound wave is a wave of alternating highpressure and low-pressure regions of air.

15.2 The wavelength of sound

15.2 The Doppler effect


The shift in frequency caused by motion is
called the Doppler effect.
It occurs when a sound source is moving at
speeds less than the speed of sound.

15.2 The speed of sound


The speed of sound in air is 343 meters per
second (660 miles per hour) at one atmosphere
of pressure and room temperature (21C).
An object is subsonic when it is moving slower
than sound.

15.2 The speed of sound


We use the term supersonic to describe motion at
speeds faster than the speed of sound.
A shock wave forms where the wave fronts pile up.
The pressure change across the shock wave is what
causes a very loud sound known as a sonic boom.

15.2 Standing waves and


resonance
Spaces enclosed
by boundaries can create
resonance with sound waves.
The closed end of a pipe is a closed boundary.
An open boundary makes an antinode in the
standing wave.
Sounds of different frequencies are made by
standing waves.
A particular sound is selected by designing the
length of a vibrating system to be resonant at
the desired frequency.

15.2 Sound waves and boundaries


Like other waves,
sound waves can be
reflected by surfaces
and refracted as they
pass from one
material to another.
Sound waves reflect
from hard surfaces.
Soft materials can
absorb sound waves.

15.2 Fourier's theorem


Fouriers theorem says any complex wave can
be made from a sum of single frequency waves.

15.2 Sound spectrum


A complex wave is really a sum of component frequencies.
A frequency spectrum is a graph that shows the amplitude
of each component frequency in a complex wave.

15.3 Sound, Perception, and


Music
Key Question:
How is musical sound
different than other
types of sound?

*Students read Section


15.3 AFTER
Investigation 15.3

15.3 Sound, Perception, and


A single frequency by
Music
itself does not have
much meaning.
The meaning comes from patterns in many
frequencies together.
A sonogram is a special
kind of graph that
shows how loud sound is
at different frequencies.
Every persons
sonogram is different,
even when saying the
same word.

15.3 Hearing sound


The eardrum vibrates
in response to sound
waves in the ear canal.
The three delicate
bones of the inner ear
transmit the vibration
of the eardrum to the
side of the cochlea.
The fluid in the spiral
of the cochlea vibrates
and creates waves that
travel up the spiral.

15.3 Sound
The nerves near
the beginning see a
relatively large
channel and
respond to longer
wavelength, low
frequency sound.
The nerves at the small end of the channel respond
to shorter wavelength, higher-frequency sound.

15.3 Music
The pitch of a sound is how high or low we hear its frequency. Though pitch and
frequency usually mean the same thing, the way we hear a pitch can be affected by the
sounds we heard before and after.
Rhythm is a regular time pattern in a sound.
Music is a combination of sound and rhythm that we find pleasant.
Most of the music you listen to is created from a pattern of frequencies called a musical
scale.

15.3 Consonance, dissonance,


and beats
Harmony is the study of how sounds work together to
create effects desired by the composer.
When we hear more than one frequency of sound and
the combination sounds good, we call it consonance.
When the combination sounds bad or unsettling, we
call it dissonance.

15.3 Consonance, dissonance,


and beats
Consonance and dissonance are related to beats.
When frequencies are far enough apart that
there are no beats, we get consonance.
When frequencies are too close together, we
hear beats that are the cause of dissonance.
Beats occur when two frequencies are close, but
not exactly the same.

15.3 Harmonics and


instruments
The same note sounds
different when played on
different instruments because the sound from an
instrument is not a single pure frequency.
The variation comes from the harmonics,
multiples of the fundamental note.

Application: Sound from a


Guitar