Sound in Space

People seem to be fascinated with the concept of sound in space. This was just underscored for us when we saw this great TED talk by physicist Janna Levin.

We have some personal experience with the public’s interest in the topic. Way back in 2003, we did a story on the black hole at the center of the Perseus Cluster. The energy generated by the giant black hole was responsible for sound waves propagating through the intercluster gas. (If you're curious, the black hole was bleating out a B flat some 52 octaves below middle C.)

Perseus Cluster

There are other examples of sound in space that don't involve George Lucas or the latest Star Trek franchise. But the question remains: what makes the concept of sound in space so engaging? If you have thoughts on the matter, we’d love to hear them. (Sorry, bad pun. Really bad pun.)

-Megan Watzke, CXC

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