Sound waves extinguishing fires in the future

Very interesting. Sound waves putting out fires. The article goes on to mention applications in space. Could this in theory replace conventional water sprinklers in buildings? What sort of volume is required to put out a flame? Lots of questions and plenty of theory. I’ll wait before replacing my fire extinguisher.

“”I throw more power into my voice, and now the flame is extinguished,” wrote Irish scientist John Tyndall about his experiments with sound and fire in 1857. Countless public demonstrations and a handful of lab tests later, researchers are still struggling to determine exactly how sound snuffs flames.

Sound travels in waves, which are simply variations of pressure in a medium—whether solid, liquid or gas. The energy from vibrating objects, such as speaker membranes, moves from particle to particle in the air in a repeating pattern of high- and low-pressure zones that we perceive as sound. According to the ideal gas law, temperature, pressure and volume are related; therefore, a decrease in pressure can lead to a corresponding decrease in temperature, which may explain how sound can extinguish a flame.” (link)


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