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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 57.djvu/373

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363
PHOTOGRAPHY OF SOUND WAVES.

of a noise, was reproduced by reflecting the crack of the spark from a little flight of steps. In the first picture the wave is seen half way between its origin and the reflecting surface. In the second it has struck the top stair, which is giving off its echo, the first wave of our artificially constructed musical tone. In the third we find the original wave at the sixth step, with a well-developed train of five waves rising from the flight. The following three pictures show the further development of the wave train. The height of each step was about a quarter of an inch; consequently the distance between the waves was half an inch. This would correspond to a note about three octaves above the highest ever used in music.

PSM V57 D373 The reflection inside the hollow sphere.png
Fig 9. The Reflection Inside the Hollow Sphere.

While experimenting with the complete circular mirror, which, it will be remembered, gave the most complicated forms, it occurred to me that a very vivid idea of how these curious wave surfaces are produced could be obtained by preparing a complete series in proper order on a kinetoscope film, and then projecting them in succession on the screen. The experimental difficulties were, however, too great to make it seem worth while to attempt to obtain a series of pictures of the actual waves, it being very difficult to accurately regulate the time interval between the two sparks. The easier method of making a large number of geometrical constructions, and then photographing them in succession