The Incredible Sound Wave

The creation of the cosmos involved a wide range of physical substances and energies expressed in very specific ways. Light is expressed in a two dimensional particle called a photon that has mass as long as it is moving and no mass when it stops. Light exists not only in visible light but also in the form of radio, ultraviolet, infrared, x-rays, and others dependent on frequency energy. Light waves are very specific in their properties and form. Sound waves are a completely different phenomena which share many of the properties of light waves and yet are remarkably different.

Light waves travel in a transverse method shown in Box A. The energy is put into the wave vertically and it travels in the pattern shown. Sound waves are put into the material in a longitudinal way and compress and stretch the material as shown in Box B. Unlike light waves, sound waves have no mass and can only exist if there is a material for the wave to react with. There is no sound in the vacuum of space because there is no material for the sound to react with. An exploding star or spaceship makes no sound (in spite of what Hollywood portrays).

Because of the nature of sound we are able to hear things in total darkness and under almost any conditions. When a sound wave compresses and stretches a material as shown in Box B, the sound wave spreads out in all directions. Every material in nature has a natural frequency at which it vibrates which is called a resonate frequency. A sound wave will cause every material of the same frequency as the sound wave to vibrate. In our ears there are many hair like structures called cillia. Each cillia vibrates at one particular frequency. When that frequency activates the cillia, the signal to the brain identifies the sound both in terms of frequency, loudness, and quality.

Sounds properties allow animals to communicate in many different ways. Sound travels through liquids, solids, and gases. Man has learned to use sound to record history, provide pleasure and to see things without light. We have also learned to use resonance to break up kidney stones and clean oil from our clothes. When you consider the nature of sound and the complexity of the equipment seen in living things to utilize sound, the incredible intelligence of the design of sound and light can be seen. Sound waves are a dynamic part of our world and speak to us of its design in a unique way.

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