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Current Acoustics News and Events, Acoustics News Articles.
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Stormquakes: Powerful storms cause seafloor tremors
Stormquakes are a phenomenon characterized by seismic activity originating at the ocean floor due to powerful storms. Heavy storms, like hurricanes or nor'easters, can create seismic waves as large as magnitude 3.5 quakes. These tremors caused by the effects of storms on the seafloor are what researchers call stormquakes. Catherine de Groot-Hedlin, who was part of the group that first observed stormquakes, will discuss their properties and meteorological significance at the 178th ASA Meeting. (2019-12-06)

Move over Jules Verne -- scientists deploy ocean floats to peer into Earth's interior
The release of more than 50 floating sensors, called Mobile Earthquake Recording in Marine Areas by Independent Divers (MERMAIDs), is increasing the number of seismic stations around the planet. Scientists will use them to clarify the picture of the massive mantel plume in the lower mantel lying below the South Pacific Ocean. This effort will also establish one of the most comprehensive overviews of seismic activity across the globe. (2019-12-06)

Finding meaning in 'Rick and Morty,' one burp at a time
One of the first things viewers of 'Rick and Morty' might notice about Rick is his penchant for punctuating his speech with burps. Brooke Kidner has analyzed the frequency and acoustics of belching while speaking, and by zeroing in on the specific pitches and sound qualities of a midspeech burp, aims to find what latent linguistic meaning might be found in the little-studied gastrointestinal grumbles. Kidner will present her findings at the 178th ASA Meeting. (2019-12-05)

Bats may benefit from wildfire
Bats face many threats -- from habitat loss and climate change to emerging diseases, such as white-nose syndrome. But it appears that wildfire is not among those threats, suggests a study from the University of California, Davis. (2019-12-05)

Can 3D-printing musical instruments produce better sound than traditional instruments?
Music is an art, but it is also a science involving vibrating reeds and strings, sound waves and resonances. The study of acoustics can help scientists produce beautiful music even with musical instruments fashioned with high-tech methods, such as 3D printing. Researchers studied the sound quality of a 3D-printed ukulele and compared it to a standard wooden instrument, and will present the group's results at the 178th ASA Meeting. (2019-12-05)

Atom music lets listeners experience atomic world through sound
Atoms absorb and release energy in the form of photons that we perceive as different colors, which can be passed through a prism that reveals the atom's spectrum as colored lines. The lines are specific to the atom and can be used to identify the element it belongs to. During the 178th ASA Meeting, Jill Linz will describe how her interpretation of the interconnectedness of sound and light waves led her to create spectral scales. (2019-12-04)

National Park Service scientists: Does aircraft noise make birds more vocal?
National Park Service scientists analyzed nearly 1 million 10-second audio recording samples from national parks across the country and discovered a small increase in bird sound detection when an aircraft sound is also detected. During the 178th ASA Meeting, Kurt Fristrup will present the findings and how human responses to noise might be studied. (2019-12-04)

Characterizing whale vocalization can help map migration
Killer whale pods each have their own set of calls they use to communicate, sometimes referred to as the pod's 'dialect.' By characterizing a pod's calls, researchers can track its seasonal movements, gaining a better understanding of the whales' lives. Jessica Sportelli at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography studies a pod of relatively unknown killer whales in Pond Inlet, Nunavut, Canada and she will describe their repertoire of calls at the 178th ASA Meeting. (2019-12-03)

Ultrasound techniques give warning signs of preterm births
Ultrasound can be used to examine cervix tissue and improve diagnostics, which is essential for predicting preterm births, and ultrasound data is used to compare two techniques for evaluating changes in cervical tissue throughout pregnancy. Researchers are looking at ultrasonic attenuation coefficients that can help scientists characterize cervical changes throughout pregnancy and in preparation for birth before other symptoms, such as contractions or dilation, occur. They will discuss their work at the 178th ASA Meeting. (2019-12-03)

Improving drug delivery for brain tumor treatment
Despite improvements in drug delivery mechanisms, treating brain tumors has remained challenging. Researchers have studied the processes affecting therapeutic drug penetration into brain tumors and will present two strategies for improving the delivery of therapeutic agents during at the 178th ASA Meeting. One approach is to use microbubbles to help overcome vascular barriers within the tumors and improve nanoparticle penetration across the vessel wall. The second method uses ultrasound in combination with temperature-sensitive nanoparticles. (2019-12-02)

Whales stop being socialites when boats are about
The noise and presence of boats can harm humpback whales' ability to communicate and socialise, in some cases reducing their communication range by a factor of four. The discovery was made by Dr Rebecca Dunlop from The University of Queensland's Cetacean Ecology and Acoustics Laboratory, who monitored the acoustics and social behaviour of humpback whales off Queensland's Peregian Beach. (2019-11-28)

Super light dampers for low tones
A team of Empa acoustic researchers has built macroscopic crystal structures that use internal ro-tation to attenuate the propagation of waves. The method makes it possible to build very light and stiff materials that can also 'swallow' low frequencies very well, as they report in the journal Nature Communications. (2019-10-15)

Light and sound in silicon chips: The slower the better
Acoustics is a missing dimension in silicon chips because acoustics can complete specific tasks that are difficult to do with electronics and optics alone. For the first time researchers have added this dimension to the standard silicon photonics platform. The concept combines the communication and bandwidth offered by light with the selective processing of sound waves. (2019-09-16)

Underwater soundscapes reveal differences in marine environments
Storms, boat traffic, animal noises and more contribute to the underwater sound environment in the ocean, even in areas considered protected. (2019-09-04)

Ultrasound: The potential power for cardiovascular disease therapy
In the current issue of Cardiovascular Innovations and Applications volume 4, issue 2, pp. 125-134; DOI, the authors summarize the biomedical effects of acoustic intervention in experimental and clinical studies, current challenges, and the potential of ultrasound for cardiovascular disease therapy. (2019-08-15)

Researchers create first-ever personalised sound projector with £10 webcam
A University of Sussex research team have demonstrated the first sound projector that can track a moving individual and deliver an acoustic message as they move, to a high-profile tech and media conference in LA. (2019-08-05)

Strong storms also play big role in Antarctic ice shelf collapse
Warming temperatures and changes in ocean circulation and salinity are driving the breakup of ice sheets in Antarctica, but a new study suggests that intense storms may help push the system over the edge. (2019-07-18)

Mastering a prickly problem in ferrofluids
Computer simulation accurately captures the beguiling motion of a liquid magnetic material. (2019-07-15)

Auroral crackling sounds are related to the electromagnetic resonances of the Earth
A new study shows that the sounds generated at an altitude of 70 to 80 metres are the result of the activation of Schumann resonances. (2019-07-10)

Storing data in music
Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed a technique for embedding data in music and transmitting it to a smartphone. Since the data is imperceptible to the human ear, it doesn't affect listening pleasure. This could have interesting applications in hotels, museums and department stores. (2019-07-09)

The discovery of acoustic spin
Recently, Chengzhi Shi (now at Georgia Tech), Rongkuo Zhao, Sui Yang, Yuan Wang, and Xiang Zhang from the University of California, Berkeley and Long Yang, Hong Chen, and Jie Ren from Tongji University discover and experimentally observe the existence of acoustic spin in airborne sound waves. (2019-05-28)

Restaurant acoustics that schmeckt
Acoustics consultant Klaus Genuit says that new ISO guidelines for defining, measuring and evaluating soundscapes are a big step forward in guiding the creation of audibly fine restaurants. 'A soup might be delicious or not, but you can't answer this by knowing the temperature of the soup. It is the same with restaurant soundscapes -- you need a lot more information than just noise level,' he said. (2019-05-17)

New whistle alerts bats to steer clear of wind turbines
Wind turbines are a critical component in the strategy for energy independence, but these massive structures are also killing bats. Now, researchers from Texas A&M University are exploring a unique passive acoustic whistle mounted on turbine blades to warn bats of the deadly turbines using a sound they can easily hear and recognize. They will present the team's research findings at the 177th ASA Meeting. (2019-05-15)

Scientists suss out the secrets of human screams
Screaming is well-studied in animals, but much less is known about how human screams function in communication, or how similar or different human screams are from those of other species. To help unlock the secrets of human screaming, researchers at Emory University have studied human vocal sounds, representing a broad acoustical range and array of emotional contexts, and studied what makes a sound a scream or not. (2019-05-15)

How loud is too loud when it comes to sports whistles?
Referees and others using whistles on the job need a simple way to determine whether it's harmful to their hearing, so researchers set out to put it to the test and to provide some clarity and damage risk criteria for impulse noise exposures. To do this, the group carefully measured and analyzed the acoustic signature of 13 brands of whistles identified as the 'most commonly used' by 300 sports officials -- both indoors and outdoors. (2019-05-15)

Can sound protect eagles from wind turbine collisions?
Every year, bald and golden eagles are killed when they inadvertently fly into wind turbine blades. One possible way to prevent these deaths is to chase the birds away with acoustic signals. To determine what types of sounds are most effective in deterring the birds, researchers tested the behavioral responses of bald eagles to a battery of both natural and synthetic acoustic stimuli. (2019-05-15)

How Nigerian music can help you choose a ripe watermelon
The quickest way to decide if a watermelon is ripe or not is by tapping on it. And if you're having trouble detecting the subtleties of the sound, listen to some Nigerian traditional music to get your ears attuned. Nigerian researcher Stephen Onwubiko has found a link between the sounds of drumming in traditional Nigerian music and the sound of fingers drumming on watermelons in the markets. (2019-05-14)

Illinois research team introduces wearable audio dataset
Researchers studying wearable listening technology now have a new data set to use, thanks to a team from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. (2019-05-14)

New study shows toddlers are great at getting the conversation started
Conversation is an important part of what makes us human. Previous research has shown that children begin to develop this skill at a young age. While many assume that mothers instigate communication with their children, new research suggests that children are the ones who get the conversation started. 'I was surprised that kids were drivers of conversation,' said Mark VanDam, who will present his team's research findings at the 177th ASA Meeting, May 13-17, 2019. (2019-05-14)

How much language are unborn children exposed to in the womb?
The different soundscapes of NICUs has recently attracted interest in how changes in what we hear in our earliest days might affect language development in the brain. One ongoing study is hoping to better understand these differences by painting a clearer picture of what kinds of sounds full-term infants are exposed to in the womb. Researchers are conducting one of the first studies on how often full-term fetuses hear spoken language before birth. (2019-05-14)

How acoustics detected artillery in WWI
During WWI, William Lawrence Bragg led the development of an acoustic method to locate enemy artillery, work that was so successful that it was soon used widely throughout the British army. The method, known as sound ranging, was also adopted by the US Army when they joined the war, and earned Bragg a military decoration from the British armed forces. Bragg's story will be presented at the 177th ASA Meeting, May 13-17, 2019. (2019-05-13)

Locating a shooter from the first shot via cellphone
Militaries have worked hard to develop technologies that simultaneously protect soldiers' hearing and aid in battlefield communication. However, these don't help if a soldier takes it off to assess the location of incoming gunfire. A French researcher has developed a proof of concept that uses the microphones in a TCAPS system to capture a shooter's acoustic information and transmit this to a soldier's smartphone to display shooter location in real time. (2019-05-13)

Quieter intensive care units may translate to better outcomes for infants in new study
Excessive noise is widely known to have negative effects on health, and children in neonatal intensive care units are among the most vulnerable. Researchers have conducted one of the first studies linking the quiet time soundscape inside NICUs with infant health. The study examined the effects of quiet time implementation in multiple NICUs on infants up to 18 months after implementation. They will present their findings at the 177th ASA Meeting, May 13-17. (2019-05-13)

Signals to noise in acoustic vehicles alerting systems
If you've wished for a quieter commute, you may be in luck: The low-emission electric vehicles of tomorrow are expected to lower noise pollution as well as air pollution. The prospect of a future powered by environmentally friendly electric vehicles is leading experts to consider the benefits -- and the risks -- of quieter traffic. Two experts, Klaus Genuit and Rene Weinandy, will present work studying acoustic vehicle alerting systems at the 177th ASA Meeting. (2019-05-13)

Want to expand your toddler's vocabulary? Find another child
Children glean all kinds of information from the people around them. In particular, children mimic and learn speech patterns from their family. Previous work has shown that infants attend selectively to their mother's voice over another female's voice. But new research suggests that children learn new words best from other children. Yuanyuan Wang will present research findings from a collaborative work with Amanda Seidl from Purdue University at the 177th ASA Meeting, May 13-17, 2019. (2019-05-13)

A surprising experiment opens the path to new particle manipulation methods
A surprising experiment opens the path to new particle manipulation methods. Unexpected result from acoustics experiment could have applications in biomedical and microsystems research. (2019-05-10)

Researchers have invented a quieter airplane toilet
Airplane toilets are loud. For some, they are downright terrifying. But chin up, frequent flyers, because a group of Brigham Young University physicists have figured out how to make them quieter. After two years of trial and error, three academic publications and thousands of flushes, the researchers have invented a vacuum-assisted toilet that is about half as loud as the regular airplane commode. (2019-04-04)

Review of noise impacts on marine mammals yields new policy recommendations
Marine mammals are particularly sensitive to noise pollution because they rely on sound for so many essential functions, including communication, navigation, finding food, and avoiding predators. An expert panel has now published a comprehensive assessment of the available science on how noise exposure affects hearing in marine mammals, providing scientific recommendations for noise exposure criteria that could have far-reaching regulatory implications. (2019-03-12)

Criteria for the reduction of environmental impact applied in the Roman Theatre of Itálica
The authors of the study have developed tools that link Life-Cycle Analysis (LCA) and Building Information Modeling (BIM) software so that environmental-impact reduction criteria can be integrated into projects from the moment of their first design. (2019-03-11)

Engineered metasurfaces reflect waves in unusual directions
Researchers at Aalto University have developed new metasurfaces for the arbitrary manipulation of reflected waves, essentially breaking classical reflection law to engineer it at will. (2019-02-16)

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