What Does Sound Look Like?: The Audible Rendered Visible Through Clever Technology

How can you make the invis­i­ble, vis­i­ble? One way to do it is through a nine­teenth cen­tu­ry pho­tog­ra­phy tech­nique called Schlieren Flow Visu­al­iza­tion. Bet­ter demon­strat­ed than explained, the NPR video above shows Schlieren Flow Visu­al­iza­tion in action, ren­der­ing vis­i­ble (after the 2:00 minute mark) the sounds of hands clap­ping, a tow­el snap­ping, a fire­crack­er crack­ing, and an AK-47 fir­ing off a round. The images, which cap­ture changes in air den­si­ty, were pro­vid­ed by Michael Har­gath­er, a pro­fes­sor who leads the Shock and Gas Dynam­ics Lab­o­ra­to­ry at New Mex­i­co Tech.

via NPR 

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