Electromagnetic sounds from planets

Categories: Audio, Scienza
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Published on: 30 March 2010

Another fascinating recording of space sounds captured by a NASA spacecraft.

This time it’s Jupiter sounds (electromagnetic “voices”) recorded by the Voyager. The complex interactions of charged electromagnetic particles from the solar wind , planetary magnetosphere etc. create vibration “soundscapes”.

Jupiter is mostly composed of hydrogen and helium. The entire planet is made of gas, with no solid surface under the atmosphere. The pressures and temperatures deep in Jupiter are so high that gases form a gradual transition into liquids which are gradually compressed into a metallic “plasma” in which the molecules have been stripped of their outer electrons. The winds of Jupiter are a thousand metres per second relative to the rotating interior. Jupiter’s magnetic field is four thousand times stronger than Earth’s, and is tipped by 11° degrees of axis spin. This causes the magnetic field to wobble, which has a profound effect on trapped electronically charged particles. This plasma of charged particles is accelerated beyond the magnetosphere of Jupiter to speeds of tens of thousands of kilometres per second. It is these magnetic particle vibrations which generate some of the sound you hear on this recording.

It’s interesting to compare this recording with some analog electronic music from the sixties (cfr. Screen (1968) by Jaap Vink) or some orchestral compositions by Gyorgy Ligeti (Lontano (1967) or Atmosphère).

In addition should be interesting to know if and how this recordings had been edited by the people of Brain/Mind Research that sell many NASA recordings.

Here are similar recordings from Uranus…

… and Neptune.

1 Comment
  1. Tania says:

    Che meraviglia…!

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