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The Physics of Singing



A lot of people wouldn't know that singing actually involves a great deal of physics, for example the carrying of sound from a singer to the listener, has to do with mechanical waves. Different people have different types of voices for singing, the most common difference in peoples singing voices is their range of voice. Voice ranges can reach very high notes, or they can reach very low notes. A good singer is most likely able to hit very low notes as well as very high notes. The pitch, or the high or lowness that someone can sing, is associated with frequencey.

Sound is a mechanical wave because it requires a medium to travel, when someone sings, the higher frequency they sing in, the higher their pitch will be, for example, someone with a squeaky voice like Taylor Swift sings at a high frequencey, while someone with a low raspy voice like Adele sings at a lower frequency. Frequency is measured in hertz and the frequency of a wave refers to how often the particles of the medium vibrate when a wave passes through the medium. Frequency is measured as the number of wave cycles that occur in one second. 1 hertz = 1 vibration/second


Amplitude of a sound wave is also part of singing. When someone sings with a greater amplitude compared to a smaller amplitude, they are singing louder compared to singing quieter. Amplitude is the size of the vibration in a sound wave that affects how loud we sing. Larger vibrations make a louder sound.


Diffraction is also used in singing because it helps us to explain why sound can be heard from different rooms when someone is singing. Diffraction uses the edges of barriers to send sound waves out in a different direction than they were origonally going. For example if someone was performing a solo in a highschool auditorium and someone opened the doors, now most likely the whole hallway would be able to hear them. That is because with long wavelengths and small openings, sound diffractions more and therefore will be sent out further. Singing involves a lot of physics and without understanding how sound waves travel or how to magnify voices then one would not be able to master the art of singing.


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Great job relating the physics of waves to singing!  Covered just about an entire "intro to waves" unit!   :goodjob:

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Fantastic entry! I really like how you make the point that those singers that best understand the physics are best able to control and utilize their own voice! Bravo!

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