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Thursday, 25 February 2016

Does the Moon sing?

Above: A map of the Moon's residual magnetic field. Could it be connected to the strange radio signals? Courtesy of NASA.

There's been a story circulating about mysterious sounds - sometimes described as music - that were heard over the radio by the crew of Apollo 10 as they circled the Moon. Similar sounds were reported by other astronauts orbiting the Moon, but their origin is a complete mystery. Have a listen:

It wouldn't be a total surprise if the Moon did produce some sort of structured, or 'musical' noise at radio frequencies. A lot of the worlds we've visted - even really tiny ones like comets - produce radio frequency 'songs'. 
The songs have various origins: The vibrations of charged particles within the worlds structure, charged particles coming from them, or the solar wind hitting a worlds magnetic field are a few of the most common. The Moon has some areas with a residual magnetic field, so perhaps that's the explanation.

Here're are few of the radio wave 'songs' played by various worlds. See what you think - does it sound like music to you?

Elsewhere in the Universe:
Virgin Galactic looks to establish safety culture
China aims to land rover on Mars
Earth may be rare after all

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