Speed of sound
What is it ?
The speed of sound is the speed at which sound waves propagate in a given medium. It depends on the medium in which the sound propagates and can vary considerably from one medium to another. In air at a temperature at 20 degrees Celsius, for example, the speed of sound is about 343 meters per second.
The speed of sound was first calculated by the Greek mathematician and philosopher Aristotle centuries ago. However, it took until the 17th century for the speed of sound to be measured with relative accuracy. French scientist Marin Mersenne was the first to measure the speed of sound with any precision. During the 18th and 19th centuries, the experiments of Halley, Boyle, Cassini, Huygens and others, based on the difference in propagation time between light and sound produced more precise results.
Later, other scientists such as Lord Rayleigh and James Clerk Maxwell contributed to the understanding of the speed of sound and its relation to sound waves. The speed of sound was measured with even greater accuracy over the following centuries through the use of increasingly precise measurement methods and improved understanding of the nature of sound waves.