Strange Sounds: Episode 85

This week we’re with Borg and we’re talking about the sound of plasma waves on Saturn, Jupiter’s electromagnetic sounds, the museum of endangered sounds, screaming sausages, and the gold record that the U.S.A. sent into space with a message for aliens.

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Plasma Waves on Saturn
NASA flew the Cassini spaceship into Saturn last year. Directly into it. It crashed into the planet taking measurements and readings to the very end. The Cassini launched in 1997 and took 7 years to get to Saturn. Its been hanging around orbiting and probing Saturn since then, sending the info back to us on earth. Until last year when it was running out of fuel so they wanted to crash it into Saturn rather than have it fly of into space and hit some other ship or contaminate a planet that any earth microbes might grow on. They figure crash it on Saturn. So a few months before it crashes they get in a very low orbit, like in between the planet and its rings. And so about 20 of these tight orbits later and then finally crash into the planet. But before the crash we got some weird info. The Ship picked up some plasma waves heading from Saturn to its rings and into one of its moons. They said it was like an electrical circuit, with energy flowing back and forth. Researchers converted those plasma waves into an audio file “in the same way a radio translates electromagnetic waves into music.”

Jupiter sounds
A recording of Jupiter sounds (electromagnetic “voices”) by NASA-Voyager. The complex interactions of charged electromagnetic particles from the solar wind , planetary magnetosphere etc. create vibration “soundscapes”.
Museum of endangered sounds
It’s a website with a bunch of audio clips of different technology that has gone obsolete. For instance: the connecting of 56k modems. There are currently 15 clips but look for more in the future at http://savethesounds.info/
Screaming sausages
British food scientist Stuart Farrimond has measured the decibel levels produced by sausages dating back to 1845. Farrimond discovered that today’s sausages don’t make as much noise as those made from older recipes, saying that it’s because they are more lean and contain less moisture (in England they’re called bangers because they’re so loud).

Murmurs of the Earth, Voyager Spacecraft (1977)
We launched a gold record into space in 1977 for aliens to listen to on their record players.

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