Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

A question about hearing - help please

  1. Mar 12, 2004 #1
    Hi all

    Does anyone know the time delay through the head between the voicebox producing sound and the ear registering it?

    Thanks in advance

  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 12, 2004 #2
    Well, what does "registering" mean? The time that the person should become aware of the sound, or simply the time the sound reaches the ear end of the auric nerve(s)? Also, I think you should specify the center of the voicebox. It would make a big difference if you are interested in the edge of the voicebox nearest the nearest ear instead.

    In any case, I dunno, sorry.
  4. Mar 12, 2004 #3

    Chi Meson

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    A very quick estimate of the speed of sound through bone is about 2500 m/s (speed of sound through solids is equal to the square root of the ("young's modulus" over the density) or sqrt (Y/rho). Young's modulus of bone is about 10^10 N/m^2.

    It's about 13 cm from the voicebox to the middle ear (give or take a cm), so sound will get there in about 50 microseconds. The composition (densities and elasticities) of bone varies through the body, so this is just a rough estimate.
  5. Mar 12, 2004 #4
    Good answer Chi Meson!
  6. Mar 12, 2004 #5
    Thanks so much for the reply Chi


Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook