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Apr4-03, 10:24 PM
P: n/a
^^^ It's not that the fast-moving air conducts sound worse; there is no sonic boom. You could have an arbitrarily small gradient over a large space and this would be the case.

You could ask what the maximum gradient is before you get a sonic boom.... I would guess the characteristic length would depend on both the fluid properties of air like the density, *and* the size of the object creating the sonic boom. Not sure though... you could probably find the answer in a fluid dynamics book...