Show yourself how well sound travels
these simple tests in the tub or swimming pool:
the bath water is running, listen to the sound it makes splashing
into the tub. When there is enough water to slide under and submerge
your ears, do so.
your head above the water, hold two spoons below the surface and
clink them together, listening to the sound. Then, put your ears
under the water, clink the spoons, and listen.
give the spoons to a friend. With your head above water, close
your eyes and have your friend clink the spoons together. Can
you tell what direction the sound is coming from? Then, put your
ears under the water, keep your eyes closed, and have your friend
clink the spoons again, from a different location. It will be
harder to tell where the sound is coming from. Now, ask your friend
to clink the spoons underwater somewhere. You'll find that you
still can't tell which direction the sound is coming from.
thats generated underwater stays underwater; very little sound
passes from water to air. When your head is out of the water and
you listen to a sound made underwater, you dont hear much.
But if you put your head under the water, the sound becomes much
You also feel more of a sound when youre underwater. Above
the surface, the sound waves only vibrate your eardrum (unless the
sound is very loud). When your head is submerged, your skull also
vibrates with the sound because it is close to the same density
and elasticity as water. Below the surface, sound waves pass directly
through the water and into your head.
Youre witnessing evidence that water is a good conductor of
sound. For starters, sound travels through water five times faster
than it travels through air. When a sound is carried to you through
the air, you judge the location of its source by comparing when
the sound reaches one ear versus the other. But when youre
under water, the sound travels so fast that it reaches both ears
at almost the same time. Thats why it was hard to tell where
your friend was clinking the underwater spoons.