Study of surf sounds to study bubble size data for industrial and environmental use
From the plink of a single drop of liquid falling into a glass of water to the roar of ocean waves, the formation of bubbles makes the sounds familiar to everyone.
These sounds contain valuable data on the size and number of bubbles that have applications not only in many different industries, but also in determining the amount of carbon dioxide absorbed by Earth’s oceans.
Funded by a $ 525,000 grant from the Australian Research Council Discovery Project, researchers at Swinburne University of Technology are studying the dynamics of bubbles in waves.
“We believe that bubbles in crashing ocean waves facilitate the absorption of up to a third of global carbon dioxide emissions, but the true fraction absorbed by the ocean is poorly understood, which adds to the uncertainty in climate change models, ”says lead researcher Professor Richard Manasseh.
“Bubble size is also important in industries that depend on pumping air into liquids, including the manufacturing of processed foods and pharmaceuticals, refining and recycling of rare earths.”
The size of the bubbles controls the rate at which oxygen or other gases are absorbed by water or other liquids. At present, measuring bubble size is practically impossible in most practical industrial and environmental situations.
Dr Filippo Nelli is working on simple laboratory experiments to understand the relationship between the size of bubbles and the amplitude of sound produced as they form.
The relationship between the size of the bubbles and the frequency of sound – the “pitch” of the “musical note” made by the bubbles – has been understood since the 1930s, but uncertainty about the amplitude or volume of sound has been understood. made sound recordings impossible to interpret.
Dr Filippo Nelli was recruited as a postdoctoral researcher and is working on simple laboratory experiments to understand the relationship between the size of bubbles and the amplitude of sound produced as they are formed. Studying five different bubble-forming processes will create a database.
At the same time, Professor Andrew Ooi from the University of Melbourne will use a supercomputer to digitally simulate what is being measured in the lab.
The objective is to develop instruments for monitoring these processes, allowing their ultimate control.
“Australian instrument makers would gain a potential new product and Australia’s minerals, food, pharmaceutical and environmental monitoring industries would be the first to benefit,” says Professor Manasseh.
Waves music project
In a creative addition to the Surf Sounds project, Melbourne-based composer, sound artist and musician Elissa Goodrich received a grant from the Australian Arts Council to work on a musical interpretation of bubble acoustics research. Ms. Goodrich specializes in the use of music to interpret science for the public and was recently named a guest member of Swinburne.
Elissa Goodrich will work with the Surf Sounds science team to create new music and sound art that convey vital themes of climate science and tipping point and threshold modeling.
“I’m very excited to be able to work as an integrated artist with Richard’s Surf Sounds project and do it in a longitudinal approach,” says Ms. Goodrich.
As her musical composition ideas develop, she will introduce a small ensemble of musicians with expertise in contemporary improvised music, to develop a complete musical work for a contemporary live jazz / classical ensemble and electroacoustic sound art. .