Sand + Vibration = Art

How I See It

It is time for some fun and a brief lesson on the physics of vibrations. This post is about vibrations of objects that appear rigid. In particular, the vibrations of solid metal surfaces and extremely tight drum heads. The vibrations are barely visible to the naked eye. With the right circumstances and equipment, they can be made obvious and to appear as things of beauty. Here is an wonderful example.

This movie was made for Otona no Kagaku Magazine, a magazine with projects for adults and kids. This shows the art performance by Mr. Kenichi Kanazawa who illustrated the method of making sounds visible. The technique was invented by Ernst Chladni — a physicist of 18-19 century. After placing 4 colored sand piles on a steel pan, Mr. Kanazawa rubs the surface of the metal pan with a rubber ball attached to the tip of metal stick to…

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