Whales use sound for communication and echolocation.

Question 1 of 4

Listen to the whale. Can you identify the whale making this sound?

Orca     Humpback     Pilot     Sperm    

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Which oscilloscope pattern matches the whale sound?

A     B     C    

A

B

C

Next >>>

Question 2 of 4

Listen to the whale. Can you identify the whale making this sound?

Orca     Humpback     Pilot     Sperm    

Please install Adobe Flash to play the audio file.


Which oscilloscope pattern matches the whale sound?

A     B     C    

A

B

C

Next >>>

Question 3 of 4

Listen to the whale. Can you identify the whale making this sound?

Orca     Humpback     Pilot     Sperm    

Please install Adobe Flash to play the audio file.


Which oscilloscope pattern matches the whale sound?

A     B     C    

A

B

C

Next >>>

Question 4 of 4

Listen to the whale. Can you identify the whale making this sound?

Orca     Humpback     Pilot     Sperm    

Please install Adobe Flash to play the audio file.


Which oscilloscope pattern matches the whale sound?

A     B     C    

A

B

C

Next >>>

Thanks for participating in our Whale Sound activity.

You can now: Learn how to Read an Oscilloscope

Check out these whale Links:

Read about Marine Activities and Resource Education at the Lawrence Hall of Science

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How to Read an Oscilloscope

An osciliscope takes something like sound and turns it into a picture. Up and down represent amplitude, and left to right represent time.

Here is a simple sine wave:

Next: Frequency >>>

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Frequency

Frequency is how fast the wave goes up and down.

High frequency wave:

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Low frequency wave:

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Next: Hertz >>>

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Hertz

Frequency is measured in Hertz. One Hertz is one cycle per second:

One Hertz:

Two Hertz:

Next: Amplitude >>>

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Amplitude

Amplitude is how high the wave goes, which determines how loud it is.

A soft sound wave:


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A loud sound wave:


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Up and down represent amplitude
Left to right represent time

Mixed Tones >>>

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Mixed Tones

Two waves can be added to each other.

If we add this wave:

Tone One:

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And this wave:

Tone Two:

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The result is:

Mixed Tones:

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Multiple Sine Waves >>>

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Multiple Sine Waves

Most sounds are made up of multiple sine waves.

Here is a sound made by an Orca Whale. It is a complicated sound made up of many sine waves.

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See more osilloscope pictures of WHALE SOUNDS.

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Echolocation

"Seeing" with sound is called echolocation. Echolocation helps an animal to navigate in water.

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Communication

Whales use sound for communication:

 

Humpback Whale