What is the ultimate speed of sound transmission?
Einstein’s special theory of relativity points out the cosmic speed limit - the speed of light in a vacuum for us. But sound travels through a medium, and what is the absolute maximum speed of sound in any medium?
It is not practical to measure the speed of sound in every material, but scientists have now managed to set an upper limit on the speed transmission according to the fundamental constants of the law of nature.
According to calculations, the maximum speed of sound in all media cannot exceed 36 kilometres per second, which is about twice the speed of sound in a diamond.
Both sound and light travel as waves but the ways are slightly different. Visible light is a form of electromagnetic radiation, the reason of so-called name is light waves consist of oscillating electric and magnetic fields. These fields form self-sustaining electromagnetic waves that can travel through a vacuum at a high speed of about 300,000 kilometres per second. Light slows down when it enters a medium such as water or the atmosphere.
Sound is a mechanical wave caused by vibration in a medium. As waves travel through a medium, molecules of the medium collide with each other and transfer energy.
So, the harder the medium is, the harder it is to compress, and the faster the sound travels. For example, sound travels faster in water than in air, which is why whales can communicate over great distances in the ocean.
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