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Sound at frequencies above the audible range, namely above 20 kHz, audible only to various non-human species. Because of its very short WAVELENGTH in the megahertz range, ultrasound is used as a safe alternative to X-ray photography in medical diagnosis. Ultrasound scanning is sometimes called sonography.
When sounds are conducted separately and independently to each ear via tubes or headphones, the sounds are said to be heard dichotically. In various psychoacoustic experiments, isolation of the function of each ear is desirable, such as in the testing or simulation of BINAURAL HEARING with the PRECEDENCE EFFECT, or in testing preferences for different sounds presented simultaneously to separate ears.
If two TONEs are about 15 Hertz or less apart, INTERFERENCE will result from their similar though not exactly identical frequencies. Gradually they will move out of PHASE until at 180° destructive interference results, producing diminished loudness. When they move back into phase, constructive interference will produce increased loudness. Thus, beats are a form of AMPLITUDE MODULATION. As two frequencies are brought closer together, the beats will gradually slow down and disappear when they become identical.
The atmosphere exerts pressure on all objects in it. When a vibrating body moves in air, it creates slight disturbances of the AMBIENT atmospheric pressure. The AMPLITUDE of these pressure variations is called the sound pressure variation, whereas the effective pressure variation is 0.707 the maximum value. The oscillating variations in sound pressure (called the WAVEFORM of the sound) PROPAGATE in the form of a SOUND WAVE.