NASA this week shared an audio clip on social media that allows you to “hear” a black hole.
No surprise, the sound is terrifying.
NASA Exoplanets, a team at the agency focused on planets and other information outside our solar system, tweeted the 34-second clip on Sunday and said there’s a “misconception” that there is no sound in space.
But, the team explained, “a galaxy cluster has so much gas that we’ve picked up actual sound. Here it’s amplified, and mixed with other data, to hear a black hole!”
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The misconception that there is no sound in space originates because most space is a ~vacuum, providing no way for sound waves to travel. A galaxy cluster has so much gas that we’ve picked up actual sound. Here it’s amplified, and mixed with other data, to hear a black hole! pic.twitter.com/RobcZs7F9e
NASA initially released the “sonification” earlier this year, explaining that researchers have “associated” the black hole in the Perseus galaxy cluster with sound since 2003.
“This is because astronomers discovered that pressure waves sent out by the black hole caused ripples in the cluster’s hot gas that could be translated into a note – one that humans cannot hear some 57 octaves below middle C,” NASA confirmed in a news release.
The signals “are being heard 144 quadrillion and 288 quadrillion times higher than their original frequency,” NASA said. That means the sound isn’t exactly what you would hear if you were close to the black hole – and if humans were able to hear this kind of sound.
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The galaxy cluster Perseus is about 240 million light-years from Earth.
The audio clip has garnered more than 14 million views as of Tuesday afternoon, and most social media users agree the audio is pretty spooky.
According to NASA, a black hole sounds like billions of souls wailing in anguish from the depths of hell.
I didn’t plan on sleeping anytime in the foreseeable future, anyway… https://t.co/iROsVdn4g1
Turns out the sound of black hole is 100 times more frightening than you could have imagined https://t.co/mb4aZZuyBG
I do love that this sounds exactly what you’d think a black hole would sound like https://t.co/6qQezNRMEk
Others found the solar sound relatable, or appropriate as Halloween approaches.
I’ve seen this black hole sound tweet described by some as creepy. Gotta be honest – this sounds just like my stomach at 6:30pm when the early evening shows have wrapped. #Hungryinspace #BlackHole #dinnertime @KOINNews https://t.co/gQ5TqZy4vp
Hey Siri, add “Black Hole” by NASA to Halloween playlist #SpookySeason 👻 https://t.co/aWrFcjKB6J