The sun makes sound. In fact, NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) and the European Space Agency (ESA) have found that it actually has a kind of a song. A rhythm. A heartbeat. They’ve been listening to that beat to learn about our sun and other stars. You can listen to it for fun, at parties, or to help you sleep at night. It’s remarkably soothing.
SOHO and the ESA compiled 20 years of data on the “dynamic movement of the sun’s atmosphere”. They measured the sun’s vibrations and translated those vibrations into sound. Associate director for science in the Heliophysics Science Division at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Alex Young, remarked on what listening to the sun means for scientists. He said, “We don’t have straightforward ways to look inside the sun. We don’t have a microscope to zoom inside the sun, so using a star or the sun’s vibrations allows us to see inside of it.”
According to space.com, the clip above was put together by researcher Alexander Kosovichev of Stanford University. He took 40 days of 40 days of data from SOHO’s Michelson Doppler Imager (MDI) and purified the sun’s sound by removing interference from the spacecraft and choosing the clearest vibrations from the recording. Then he sped the data up 42,000 times faster than the original, so it’s audible to the human ear. It’s the concentrated sound of the process that allows all life on Earth to exist. That is really really cool. Now the big question is… who will be the first to sample the sun’s song in a track? Someone call Moby.