To Quiet a Whirring Computer, Fight Noise With Noise

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by King Cobra, Jun 3, 2004.

  1. King Cobra macrumors 603

    Mar 2, 2002
    Full article

    The constant drone of a computer cooling fan can be annoying. But a professor at Brigham Young University has taken an unusual step to mute this noise: more noise, produced in just the right quantities from tiny loudspeakers that surround the fan.

    "We make anti-noise," said Scott D. Sommerfeldt, a physicist who created a noise suppression system with his students. It is the latest example of a technology called active noise reduction, or noise cancellation, well known from its use in headphones designed to block out the low rumble of jet engines.

    The sound waves engineered by Dr. Sommerfeldt are out of phase with sound waves from the fan and thus they cancel each other out, substantially reducing fan noise.

    Dr. Sommerfeldt's system has four miniature speakers and four even tinier microphones set in a ring around the computer fan. The microphones and other sensors detect the noise of the fan blades and, with the help of digital signal processing and algorithms, radiate opposing tones from the speakers. The whole system can be tucked into the same space that a conventional computer cooling fan would occupy.
  2. Macmaniac macrumors 68040


    This is pretty cool and Physics says it works too! Thats how noise canceling headphones work, they just produce anti-noise that is the same tone and frequency to cancel the sound out.
  3. evil macrumors 6502

    May 2, 2003
    chicago ex-toronto
  4. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I happen to be one of those that don't find the noise of a Power Mac bothersome. Should only be concerned if it doesn't! ;)
  5. javabear90 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 7, 2003
    Houston, TX
    I should take those pieces and expand them into my room so I have a compleytly quiet room! would that work?
  6. virividox macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    Manila - Nottingham - Philadelphia - Santa Barbar
    evil that is evil

    but no force on earth can stop a wifes nagging
  7. Grokgod macrumors 6502a


    Feb 26, 2002
    Deep within the heart of madness!
    Unless you buy her a iBook.

    i have suddenly found the3 solution to girlfriend and wife problems.
    The ibook!

    Apples sweet spot in the lineup, if only it was widescreen and with a DVI out! That would rock!
  8. MongoTheGeek macrumors 68040


    Sep 13, 2003
    Its not so much where you are as when you are.
    Make sure they live in different cities and never meet each other?

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