Eardrum is a vital part of your ear, but do you know why it is called a drum? This is because RedDiamondAudio recommends that it has some similarities with the normal drum. When you hit the drum with the drumstick, you will hear some vibrations in the drum material. The difference is that the beating in the drum is replaced by the sound waves that come into contact with the eardrum. The sound we experience in the ear is a result of waves that are produced after vibrations occurring in the air around the eardrum.

This article gives an example to demonstrate how sound causes vibrations. The demonstration will use a model membrane that will act as the eardrum. Here is a list of requirements and procedures to help you create an improvised representation of sound and vibration.

Requirements

  • Wax paper or parchment
  • A rubber band
  • A large glass bowl
  • Salt or sugar
  • Portable Bluetooth speaker
  • A phone or a gadget that connects to a speaker
  • Earplugs (this is optional)

Preparations

  • Put your speaker on the bowl. Ensure the speaker is on and connected to your phone or the optional device.
  • Cover your bowl with a wax paper.
  • Use the rubber band to firmly secure the paper in the right position.
  • Sprinkle some particles of sugar or salt on the paper ensuring they are evenly spread. Avoid piles of particles.

Procedure

  1. On your device open tuner app that lets you play music. Ensure your device is set at the lowest volume possible, and then press play.
  2. As the tone plays, observe the salt or sugar particles placed on the paper. Note the behavior of the granules.
  3. Gently increase the volume of your phone while observing the changes in the salt or sugar granules. What do you see? What changes can you observe on the granules?
  4. Increase the volume further and again observe the changes. It is important to keep the volume at a comfortable level.
  5. Once you notice effects on the granules, pause the tone and then restart again. What do you see when the tone stops? What do you notice when you restart the tone?
  6. Pause the tone and evenly spread your granules.
  7. Restore your device back to the lowest volume followed by a change in from a low to higher frequency tone.
  8. Repeat the steps and slowly increase the volume. What changes do you notice? What are the differences between the low and high tones?
  9. Repeat the above steps with different tones this time and observe what happens. Take note of the observations in different tones.
  10. You can replace the glass bowl with a different household item.

Observations and results

The paper vibrates when the sound waves travel through the paper. Increasing volume lead to increased energy to the sound wave. This leads to vibrations that eventually moves the granules. You will observe that the salt or sugar shows varying patterns based on the frequency of the tone. Changing the frequency is accompanied by changes in the vibration of the paper. This results in changes in the patterns of the granules.

Therefore, you could already grasp the idea of how listening to high-volume music regularly could cause damage to your eardrum. Through this experiment, with the help of an audio device (Bluetooth speaker), we are able to see how sound travels to our ears and how it affects our ears in the long run. This is a fun learning experience that you can share with your family and friends. You don’t only get to have fun but you also gain new learning to let you grasp the complexity and brilliance of sound.

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