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The use of reflected SOUND WAVEs for obtaining environmental information. Certain animals, such as the bat and the porpoise, emit pulses of extremely high frequency sound (up to 50 kHz for bats, and up to 170 kHz for porpoises and whales) in narrow, intense streams. The REFLECTION, or ECHO, of these sounds supplies information regarding the nature and location of objects in the environment. When an emission of varying frequency is used, such as with bats, the echoes, travelling varying distances to the ear, are heard as different frequencies in each ear, thus supplying directional information.
In music, an adjective referring to HARMONY and its principles. In ACOUSTICS, when a vibrating object, such as a string, is set in motion, it vibrates both as a whole, with a FREQUENCY called the FUNDAMENTAL, and, with lesser intensity, in sections as well. If these smaller lengths are integer fractions (1/2, 1/3, 1/4, ...) of the total length of the string, their frequencies of OSCILLATION are called harmonics, and are integer multiples of the fundamental.
Literally, to hear with two ears. Opposite of MONAURAL HEARING. The fact that the ears are some distance apart allows the localization of sound by registering the slight differences in time, PHASE and INTENSITY of the sound striking each ear. Each of these parameters has a different area of effect, intensity being a major factor above 1500 Hz (see SOUND SHADOW), while PHASE DIFFERENCEs (which are equivalent to time differences) are used in localizing lower frequency sounds.
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.