Root NationNewsScientists Have Recorded the Sound of Earth’s Magnetic Field… and It’s Creepy

Scientists Have Recorded the Sound of Earth’s Magnetic Field… and It’s Creepy


We know that Halloween is right around the corner. But now it’s better to put aside horror movies and games for a few minutes to listen to something really disturbing – European Space Agency (ESA) specialists have provided data to create an audio recording of how our planet’s magnetic field sounds. While it shields us from cosmic radiation and the charged particles of the solar wind, it turns out the magnetic field can still create an eerie rumble.

You can’t point a microphone at the sky and hear the magnetic field. Actually, you can see it only during the rare aurora borealis observed in high northern latitudes. This blue-green light is produced by the collision of Earth’s oxygen and nitrogen with the aforementioned particles and emissions. Scientists from the Technical University of Denmark have converted data collected by three satellites of the ESA Swarm mission into a sound that reproduces the magnetic field during the impact of a solar storm.

Sound of the magnetic field

It is reminiscent of the sound with which the masses of the earth shift during an earthquake and the crackle of a moving glacier. There is also a deep rumble, clicking and crackling as if from electric sparks. But everyone can hear something different when listening to this five-minute clip.

“The team used data from ESA’s Swarm satellites, as well as other sources, and used these magnetic signals to manipulate and control a sonic representation of the core field,” said Technical University of Denmark’s Klaus Neilsen, who went on to aptly describe the recording as “pretty scary.”

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By the way, university employees plan to introduce as many people as possible to the sounds of the magnetic field – more than 30 loudspeakers directed into the ground will be installed in one of Copenhagen’s squares. They will broadcast audio three times a day until October 30. “[We’ve] set [the installation] up so that each speaker represents a different location on Earth and demonstrates how our magnetic field has fluctuated over the last 100,000 years,” said Nielsen.

This is not the first time that researchers have turned this kind of data into sound. Recently, NASA released an audio recording of what a black hole sounds like, and in 2021, the agency shared an audio clip of magnetic field activity around Ganymede, one of Jupiter’s moons.

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