Sound 01
Tightening a guitar string will change its vibration. It will vibrate with a greater frequency.

Sound 01

This KS3 Science quiz challenges you on sound. A sound is produced when something vibrates. Sound is used by many species of animal for detecting danger, navigation, predation and communication.

Humans appear to be the only animal that has developed music, which is a specialised form of communication. Sound travels as a wave and so it has a wavelength, speed and frequency. The speed of sound in air is about 330 metres per second. It can only travel through material media.

That means if the soundwave reaches a vacuum, it is stopped. Films that show sound travelling through space are technically incorrect - but they would be really boring without the sound effects! The pitch of a sound depends on its frequency.

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Frequency is measured in units called hertz and one hertz means one vibration per second. The higher the frequency, the higher the pitch of the sound. Some sound is so high or low pitched that human ears cannot detect it. These are called ultrasound and infrasound. Stringed instruments are very popular. Thinner strings, tighter strings and shorter strings will vibrate faster than thicker ones, looser ones or longer ones. This enables players of stringed instruments to produce a lot of different musical notes.

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  1. Older people can't hear .......
    This deterioration in hearing is actually said to begin as young as the age of eight!
  2. A large amplitude of vibration produces .......
    A guitarist can make their guitar sound louder by plucking or strumming it harder to increase the amplitude of vibration of the string. In an orchestra, the stringed instruments are played using a bow. The players can bow harder to increase the amplitude and therefore make a louder sound
  3. How will tightening a guitar string change its vibration?
    The same applies to any string instrument
  4. Sounds which have a very high frequency are called .......
    In the ocean, sperm whales use sound to stun or kill their prey
  5. A high frequency of vibrations produces .......
    Bats use very high pitched sounds to help them navigate
  6. How does decreasing the length of a guitar string change its vibration?
    Guitar players shorten strings by holding them against the frets on the fretboard (the guitar's neck)
  7. How will a thin string on a violin vibrate compared to a thick string?
    It has less mass and can therefore vibrate faster
  8. A loudspeaker changes .......
    A cardboard cone inside the loudspeaker is vibrated to create the soundwaves
  9. Frequency is measured in .......
    Heinrich Hertz was a German scientist who carried out a lot of research into electromagnetic waves
  10. Sounds cannot travel through .......
    A vacuum has no particles so there is nothing to vibrate

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