One of the most annoying sounds in the world is, most definitely, the dripping sound. Before you can fix the source of dripping, the noise lingers and is there to get on your nerves. Given this immense source of frustration, researchers have decided to find out what actually causes a faucet to drip and find a solution to this nuisance.
Where does the dripping sound come from?
The first time when people spotted these droplets falling from faucets was in 1908, when the first dripping photographs were made public. Since then, people have been extremely curious about this dripping sound.
Certain studies compared this sound with the noise produced by a bigger object hitting a wall. However, others got more sophisticated and blamed the origin of the annoyance on a sound field coming from underwater. When this field reached the surface, it starts propagating, producing the annoying noise. Unfortunately, the experiments couldn’t support any of these theories.
Now, researchers at the University of Cambridge tried an experiment that turned out to be scientifically true. On top of that, they even managed to find a way to deal with the problem and stop the nuisance. Interestingly enough, researchers came up with the idea while being kept awake by the dripping sound coming from a leaking roof.
The research also offered a solution to fix the annoying dripping sound
To find out where it came from, they installed high-speed cameras and recorded the droplets as they were falling. Apart the visual part, they also recorded the sound of the droplets. This way, they finally discovered where the sound came from.
It turns out a droplet hides a tiny bubble of air underneath its surface. This air bubble performs a small movement up and down within the droplet, and the dripping sounds actually comes from this movement. In fact, the bubble causes the water surface to vibrate, and the vibration is similar to other annoying sounds.
If you cannot fix the leaking faucet too quickly, there’s something more you can do. The droplets must fall into a recipient, be it a sink or a different kind of bowl. To stop the sound from propagating, you can add some water in the recipient, and then mix it with some dishwashing soap. The study on the annoying dripping sound was published in the journal Scientific Reports.
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