Conversion of Light energy to Sound energy

  1. Is there a way to convert light energy to a sound energy?
    I read an article and the URL is
    It is described that nano material lenses are used.
    Is there a much simpler way that I convert light to sound?
  2. jcsd
  3. russ_watters

    Staff: Mentor

    It really depends on what you mean. Light and sound are fundamentally different things, but you can, for example, use light to transmit encoded sound information, such as in an optical audio cable.
  4. SteamKing

    SteamKing 11,032
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    There is a way which used to be very popular: movie audiences experienced it every time they viewed a film in a theater:
  5. Bobbywhy

    Bobbywhy 1,864
    Gold Member

    One simple way to convert light energy to sound energy:

    Buy a greeting card that makes some sound when you open it. Remove the battery, and replace it with a Photovoltaic cell. Place the system in the sunlight.
  6. UltrafastPED

    UltrafastPED 1,912
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    When a crystal absorbs light some of the energy is converted to phonons - quantized sound. This happens all the time, but you cannot hear it. I did a lot of this during my dissertation research.

    This was first done as a controlled experiment in 1958:össbauer_effect
  7. Cthugha

    Cthugha 1,717
    Science Advisor

    A simple way? Coat something with a thin metal film and hit the metal with an intense laser pulse. It will heat quickly, creating a strain pulse in the sample, which is sound.

    See, e.g. Nature Photonics 6, 30–34 (2012), "Laser mode feeding by shaking quantum dots in a planar microcavity" (
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