Sound is an organized motion. Heat is a random motion. Some materials, including lead, rapidly turn sound into heat. Others, such as quartz crystal, very slowly turn sound into heat.
This Science Snack is part of a collection that highlights Black artists, scientists, inventors, and thinkers whose work aids or expands our understanding of the phenomena explored in the Snack.
Source: Sonavi Labs
Dr. James West (1931–present), pictured above, is an inventor and acoustician. In 1962, Dr. West studied acoustics, and co-invented the foil electret microphone. Ninety percent of all microphones produced use this technology, which has improved performance, acoustical integrity, and affordability. He has over 250 patents, and many awards, including the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, and membership in the Inventors Hall of Fame. In this Science Snack, you explore acoustics by observing how sound travels in different materials.