Q:

Is sound louder in water?

A:

Quick Answer

Sound is louder in water than in air. Sound travels as waves that bounce off objects. Sound waves travel five times faster in water than in air, and they travel farther.

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Is sound louder in water?
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Full Answer

The world's oceans are noisy places. According to the Student Society for Science, though the underwater world may sound relatively quiet to human ears, the noise level has been rising by 3 decibels every decade since the 1960s. Humans cannot hear many of the frequencies found in the oceans. The sounds they can't hear are heard and used by ocean-dwelling animals. Additional noise produced by ships' engines create havoc for animals that use sound for communication and navigation.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How much faster does sound travel through water than air?

    A:

    At 32 degrees Fahrenheit, sound waves propagate approximately four times faster in water than in air. The speed of sound in water is around 3,170 mph, while the speed of sound in air is only about 740 mph. At room temperature, which is equivalent to 68 degrees, acoustic waves travel in water and air at speeds of 3,315 mph and 767 mph, respectively.

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  • Q:

    Why doesn't sound travel through a vacuum?

    A:

    Sound does not travel through a vacuum because molecules of matter are required for sound to exist, and vacuums do not have any matter. The vibrations and movements of small particles of matter are what create sound and allow it to be heard. In a vacuum without any matter, such as space, it is impossible for sound to travel.

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  • Q:

    What is the scientific definition of sound?

    A:

    Sound is a mechanical wave resulting from the back and forth vibration of the particles of the medium through which the wave is moving. The compressions and rarefactions of sound waves move parallel to the direction of wave propagation, making sound a longitudinal wave.

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    Can sound travel through a vacuum?

    A:

    Sound cannot travel through a vacuum, because sound requires a medium to form and travel. Despite what science fiction movies show, there is no sound in space.

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