• Sound Needs a Medium

    Sound is a mechanical wave and needs a material medium like air, water, steel etc. for its propagation. It cannot travel through vacuum, which can be demonstrated by the following experiment.

     

     

    Take an electric bell and an airtight glass bell jar. The electric bell is suspended inside the airtight bell jar. The bell jar is connected to a vacuum pump, as shown in figure. If we press the switch we will be able to hear the bell. Now start the vacuum pump. When the air in the jar is pumped out gradually, the sound becomes fainter, although the same current is passing through the bell. After some time when less air is left inside the bell jar we will hear a very feeble sound.