Listen to the sounds of the elements of the periodic table!

Listen to the sounds of the elements of the periodic table!

Elements, we have learned to recognize them by their image. Their scent too, for some. Today’s researcher offers us to discover the noise you make.

Chemists know this very well. Elements absorb and emit light in their own wavelengths. Formation of spectra that allow identification. Spectra, which gave the idea to a researcher at Indiana University (USA) to see – or rather listen to – what it can offer if it is converted into music in a new exercise for what scientists call sonication. His work was presented at a meeting of the American Chemical Society.

This has already been done in the past in a primitive way. Walker Smith, he wanted to better explain the complexity and nuances of the spectra of each element of the periodic table. He developed computer code that converts light data into a mixture of observations. The wavelengths of each color become there are individual sine waves whose frequency corresponds to the frequency of the light, and the amplitude of the luminosity of that light. With some modifications to allow human ears to always remain sensitive to them.

Chemistry music

The result: the simplest elements, such as hydrogen (H) or helium (He) look like ropes. Others are played from a combination of more complex sounds. Calcium (Ca), for example, rings like bells at a rate caused by how the frequencies interact with each other. Zinc, with a large number of colors, looks like “An angelic choir sings a sweet chord with vibrato”.

For Walker Smith, the next step would be to create an interactive musical periodic table that would allow you to select an element and simultaneously watch the visible light spectrum display and hear the associated audio at the same time. He actually recorded a show based on a sound composed of large particles. Besides the artistic aspect, the researcher suggests that his work can help teach chemistry

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About the Author: Irene Alves

"Bacon ninja. Guru do álcool. Explorador orgulhoso. Ávido entusiasta da cultura pop."

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