Do soap bubbles reflect sound?

  • #1
spareine
130
39
Bats in my garden do not seem to notice soap bubbles. Do soap bubbles reflect sound?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
rootone
3,388
946
Probably only very weakly since soap bubbles are elastic and will absorb a lot of sound rather than reflecting it.
Any sound which does reflect is probably beneath the bat's hearing sensitivity
 
  • #3
spareine
130
39
On the other hand, according to classical physics the reflection coefficient is R = (Z1-Z2)2 / (Z1+Z2)2, where Z=ρc is acoustic impedance and Zair<<Zwater. That implies R≈1 due to the huge impedance mismatch.
 
  • #4
The Bill
354
136
But since the soapy water film is much thinner than it is wide, one has to take into account the kinematics of the film and air resistance on the film as it vibrates. For similar reasons a thick wood panel will reflect much more sound than a sheet of facial tissue will.
 
  • #5
rootone
3,388
946
I remember an article about a recording studio (I forget where).
The idea was that studio setup would as best as possible capture instruments and vocals with minimal complication from sound reflection.
The solution was covering most of walls and ceiling with plastic foam bubbles.
 

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