Physics 120: The Science of Music

Associate Professor Ben Szapiro,

The Department of Physics

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION:

We all love the Art of Music, probably in the same way that we enjoy looking at a beautiful rainbow. But understanding how does it work certainly adds to our full aesthetic appreciation of the experience. In this course we will explore the science behind music, technically called "musical acoustics". We will study how sound is produced, propagated through the air and perceived by our ears. We will learn the properties of sound waves, and learn to appreciate the power (or leverage) of science to explain a large number of phenomena with a small number of basic general principles. We will study how different musical instruments such as violins, guitars (acoustic and electric), pianos, flutes, trumpets, drums, and our mouth produce sound waves, and how our ears recognize them when all play the same note. We would also learn how to use computers to compose music using GarageBand software, and learn about digital recording technology and CD players. To complete the picture, we will learn about sound systems, speakers, and room and concert hall acoustics. We will visit recording studios and concert halls, attend symphony and opera performances, and talk to instrument makers and players.We will also design and make instruments of our choice, and have fun in the process! Completion of this new course fulfills both one (non-lab) science requirement and one of the two writing intensive requirements.

TEXTBOOK:The Science of Sound (3rd Edition)

by Thomas D. Rossing , F. Richard Moore, Paul A. Wheeler

Hardcover: 680 pages, Publisher: Pearson Addison Wesley; 3rd edition (December 18, 2001),ISBN: 0805385657


SYLLABUS

CLASS ROSTER

GRADING

LABS

PAPERS

INSTRUMENT PROJECTS

2004 COURSE



LINKS

Voice

MathematicaSounds

 

MUSICAL SCALE

A440SCALE.XLS (EXCEL)

Frequencies for equal-tempered scale

 

WIND CHIMES:http://www.phy.mtu.edu/~suits/windchime.html

 

Instructions for making a copper pennywhistle in the key of D

 

CD Technology

 

GUITAR

 

PIANO

 

PIANO ACTION ANIMATION

 

Hurdy Gurdy

 

LINKS FOR INSTRUMENT MAKERS:

http://www.ehhs.cmich.edu/~dhavlena/

 

 

More Details

 

 

 

 

CALCULATOR

 

 

Christian-Moeller: Electro-Clips

 

http://littleshop.physics.colostate.edu/Auditory_Illusion.html

http://littleshop.physics.colostate.edu/The_Beat....html

http://www.visualprosthesis.com/javoice.htm

MILLER PUCKETTE MUSIC 170 COURSE: (http://man104nfs.ucsd.edu/~mpuckett/170.03f/)

http://physics.mtsu.edu/~wmr/julianna.html

http://physics.mtsu.edu/~wmr/P160_open.htm

http://www.mta.ca/faculty/science/physics/suren/Beats/Beats.html

http://www.gmi.edu/~drussell/Demos.html

http://www.phy.ntnu.edu.tw/java/sound/sound.html

http://www.kettering.edu/~drussell/Demos/reflect/reflect.html

http://www.freehearingtest.com/about.shtml

http://www.glenbrook.k12.il.us/gbssci/phys/Class/sound/u11l2d.html

http://www.gmi.edu/~drussell/Demos.html

 

http://home.austin.rr.com/jmjensen/musicTheory.html#major

http://www.phys.unsw.edu.au/music/basics.html

http://ptolemy.eecs.berkeley.edu/eecs20/week8/scale.html

 

HEARING TEST

 

WELL TEMPERED CLAVIER

 

Beatles Complete Songbook

 

http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/audio/audiotoolbox.html

 

http://www.howstuffworks.com/ :

puzzle1.xls