Science is studying mysterious Hums on ocean floors for practical usage

Dec 9, 2017, 8:30 am

Aniruddha P.

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In the present evolutionary standpoint of the world, we have tech companies ruling the industries. It is possible because of their dedication and investment in science, research, and development. In terms of knowledge and implementations although we are progressing with pace presently, we still have a long way to go in discovering numerous mysteries of our home planet. One such thing is that of the earth’s emission of a quiet mysterious hum in absence of giant earthquakes, scientists have been observing this for decades now.

The hum has been measured by many seismic stations on the planet’s surface but it has never been detected underwater without earthquakes happening on earth. Most recently, a team of European scientists came up with their measurements using ocean-bottom seismometers.

The project of the measurement had 57 seismometers deployed ‘over a four million square kilometer area of the Indian Ocean, and recorded from late 2012 to late 2013.’ The scientists could find a way to analyze the data that provided a clear recording of the hum, removing potential confounding factors in the background from tides and currents. Their paper was published recently in Geophysical Research Letters.

Derived from the analysis, the hum ‘is the result of vibrations traveling with frequencies between 2.9 and 4.5 MHz like a wave traveling once every few minutes.’ These frequencies are million times lower than those of the music notes. According to a National Geographic report, there are still confusions regarding the origin or source.

Further study of the hum can turn out to be significantly useful in terms of science and practicalities. The deployment of the total number of seismometers in the world can help scientists create advanced equipment and models for better tracking and research on the hum. This can even lead to new possibilities which the scientists are not ruling out!

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