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Cymatics – The Study of Visible Sound and Vibration

Cymatics is the science of visible sound and vibration. This phenomenon may be manifested in numerous ways such as covering a plate or membrane with particles like liquid, sand, and paste which is then exposed to vibration produced by sound.

Creative technologist Evan Grant and acoustics engineer John Stuart Reid are conducting extensive research to learn more about Cymatics. By finding various methods in making sound waves take shape, they hope to understand the complex sounds from various sources such as dolphin calls or whale songs. Their studies have also raised some philosophical questions regarding the way complex shapes are formed by high frequency sound.

When vibration is focused on the particles, the surface forms complex and sometimes proportionate patterns. When the vibrations are altered, the shapes changes accordingly. This is called the Chladni plate and it was first developed by German physicist and musician Ernst Florens friedrich Chladni. He based his studies on the findings of Da Vinci and Galileo about resonance including research performed by scientist Robert Hooke.

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