Welcome to You Ask Andy

Stan Kolber, age 13, of Cargary, Alberta, for his question;

What is the exact speed of sound?

Sound does not always travel at the same speed. It must have something to travel through and cannot pass through the nothingness of a vacuum. And it passes through some things faster than it passes through others. Whatts more, the temperature also effects its speed. It travels faster through warm things than through cold things.

The standard speed of sound is through the air at a temperature of ' 0 degrees Centigrade. Under these rare conditions, it travels at 1,08'7 feet every second. It speeds up about two feeta second with each rising degree in temperature. At 30 degrees Centigrade, it whips through the air at about 1,147 feet a second.

The air, of course, is thin and filmy and sound can travel much faster through more dense materials. It whips through water at about 5,000 feet, or almost a mile, with every second, for water is somewhat denser than air. Through dense, heavy steel, wound can tear along at a speed of 16,500 feet, or more than three miles a second.


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