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Can you break glass with sound?
How loud does the sound have to be?
This depends on the glass. But for the glass we used the sound level was in the region of 135-140dB. To generate this needs very powerful loudspeakers - we used a hefty public address system. One loudspeaker wasn't enough, so we crowded two around the glass. We also placed the glass very close to the drivers to ensure the sound was as loud as possible. We also placed the glass and loudspeakers in a Perspex box. This enclosure increases the sound level generated, and also keeps the glass from going everywhere. The sound levels generated are loud enough to be a risk to hearing.

Is it safe?
Before trying this, the risks to hearing and to operators from broken glass need to be considered. Salford University accepts no responsibility for people trying this experiment, it should be left to the professionals.

Video
See Video of breaking glass (1.5M, realplayer needed)
See Video of breaking glass (1.4M, windows media player needed)

What next?
We will try and find an opera singer and see if they can break a glass. Our current bet is they can't unless they can sing very loudly.

         
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