Acoustic Trauma : Bioeffects of Sound Notes

The following are random out of order facts I found interesting in the linked article:

There are several predominant sources of naturally occurring low frequency and infrasound in the environment. The entire globe is in a continual dynamic state of enveloping low frequency sound. Sources of such low frequency sound range from atmospheric winds in the range of 30 to 40 Hz to those produced by the ocean and other turbulent bodies of water. Ocean waves produce sound with a mean frequency of 16Hz. These frequencies can become more pronounced if unique geographical conditions are present and the frequency produced by the water is the same as the resonant frequency of the environment such as in bays. The thunderous crashing torrents of water in waterfalls are strong emitters of infrasound as is the gigantic shearing and fracturing of icebergs. It has been said that such low frequency tones have a continuing effect on those inhabiting such environments. Deep seismic shocks produced by earthquakes send strong infrasonic impulses to the surface of the earth. Animals are notoriously sensitive to such vibrations displaying erratic and anxious behavior well before any human perceives the impending chaos.

The work is an investigation into the effects of low frequency sound and infrasound via the design and construction of experimental acoustic emitters. Once installed in a particular space the work will have a profound effect on the surrounding sonic environment and the physiology of human subjects present. This is achieved by the resonant interactions between the subject's body and the acoustic space.
Trance inducing properties are evident at 60 beats per minute with a frequency of 72 Hz, corresponding to the frequency of human heartbeats. Frequencies corresponding to the Alpha, Beta and Theta brain rhythms have been utilized in similar manners to influence neural activity. This is perhaps why the fabled infrasound frequency of 7 Hz is so notorious as it is the median frequency of the brain's theta rhythms. This frequency is most prominently associated with moods concerned with fear and anger. Incidentally psychopaths have a general dominance of theta rhythms. It is also allegedly the average resonant frequency of the body's organs and hence excitation would cause organ rupture and death.

The American Defense news in 1993 describes "acoustic psycho-correction" experiments carried out by the Russians from the mid 1970's which "could be used to suppress riots, control dissidents, demoralize or disable opposing forces". The device which operated by the "transmission of specific commands via static or white noise" showed "encouraging results after exposure of less than one minute" and operated without the upsetting of other intellectual functions.Operating as an infrasound device the acoustic psycho-correction message is transmitted via bone conduction. Due to this insidious facet, earplugs prove fruitless in protecting the individual, as whole body protection is needed. Further developments of such devices utilizing sonic communication directly to the temporal lobe may produce the most striking and profound acoustic attack. Literature by Silent Sounds, Inc. indicates that it is now possible to analyze human emotional EEG patterns and replicate them, then store these "emotion signal clusters" and, at will, "silently induce and change the emotional state in a human being".

Psychotropic Warfare

It is the human condition to try and find answers for inexplicable events or phenomena. Sonic weapons are often embraced in this capacity, as they are not only often imperceptible to the ear in their operation but also are capable of extensive physical and behavioural control. As a result sonic violence has also become a prevalent theme in the area of conspiracy theorists and 'mind control' victims. This has lead to the loss of credibility in an area that has an extremely significant impact on the human organism.
The aims of such systems are to influence and manipulate neural activity or to confuse or destroy the signals that normally keep the body in equilibrium. One such group of devices are silent communication systems in which non-aural carriers in the infrasound or ultrasound range are propagated acoustically or vibrationally for inducement into the brain.

They may be used to "artificially implant negative emotional states - feelings of fear, anxiety, despair and hopelessness."Such a device is outlined in the 1992 US Patent #5,159,703.

The threshold for infrasound is around 140dB at 20Hz increasing to about 162dB at 2 Hz and to 175-180dB for static pressure.Due to the ethical issues regarding testing human subjects, experiments on dogs were conducted at levels of 170dB at a frequency of 0.5 Hz. Curiously the dogs stopped breathing because of lung ventilation due to the high intensity pressure changes, although the 0.5 Hz frequency of the sound acted as an artificial respirator and the dogs showed no ill effects afterwards.Many of the most profound effects of sound are attributed to infrasound in the region of 7Hz. This corresponds with the median alpha-rhythm frequencies of the brain.It is also commonly alleged that this is the resonant frequency of the body's organs and hence organ rupture and death can occur at high intensity exposures.
Recently, psycho-acoustic warfare was allegedly used in the Waco siege at the Davidian compound in Texas, where it is said that the FBI used sounds of babies crying, dentist drills and a variety of other unpleasant sounds to mentally influence their opponents. The Waco compound was allegedly bombarded for long durations by these sounds via large public address systems.

  The pinnacle of sensational notions related to low frequency and particularly infrasound came after the publication of Gavreau's findings in Science Journal in 1968. At this time a variety of unsubstantiated and sensational reports appeared in the media, such as the Miami Herald's article relating to Gavreau's work entitled 'Sound Ray Developed as A Killer — French Working On A War Machine' ,and the London Observer's report on the 7th January 1968 "Sound As a Weapon Of War". Perhaps the most sensational and absurd effects attributed to infrasound was reported in the Melbourne Sunday Press (7th September 1973). Entitled "The Low Pitched Killer", the article is concerned with the lethal effects of infrasound generated by open car windows. This document, as well as "Does Infrasound Make Drivers Drunk" published in New Scientist 1972, claimed that infrasound generated by automotive travel is responsible for a variety of dubious physiological effects including 'motorway madness'.

Any severe extreme imposed on the sonic environment has a profoundly destabilizing effect on the individual. This becomes evident in both the areas of high intensity acoustic energy and also its complete absence. Anechoic chambers, which create an environment void of sound, have the ability to produce similar feelings of disorientation and disturbance that are evident with high intensity sound. The silence envelops the individual in a suffocating manner causing both psychological trauma and also physiological disturbance in the form of balance and other related body function.

It is clearly apparent that the human organism is in an extremely delicate state of equilibrium with the sonic environment and any profound disturbance of this system will have subsequent ramifications on the individual.

All objects have a property known as resonant frequency. Resonance involves the "re-enforcement of vibrations of a receiving system due to a similarity to the frequencies of the source". One of the most famous examples of natural resonance is Tacoma Narrows Bridge at Puget Sound Washington. After being exposed to gusts of wind the bridge began to vibrate at its natural resonant frequency and subsequently began to swing wildly and finally shake itself to pieces.

The opposite of these properties is characteristic of high frequency sound which can readily be absorbed by materials and is highly directional and as such has been an asset in the design of acoustic weapons.

  It is generally accepted that sound is perceptible to humans in the range of 20hz to 20khz (1Hz is one complete cycle per second of a sinusoidal wave). Although this is the accepted human auditory range most people, depending on age and gender, cannot hear sound above 14 to 18Khz. Contrary to popular assumption, careful measurements have shown that hearing does not abruptly stop at 20 Hz but the ear is capable of registering infrasound as low as 1Hz if sound pressure is sufficient. Frequencies above 20 kHz are considered ultrasound whilst frequencies beneath 20Hz are considered infrasound. via Mobile

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