Absorption and Reflection of Sound

Sound tends to "bend around" non-porous, small obstacles.
Large surfaces such as the boundaries of rooms are typically
partially flexible and partially porous. So, when sound strikes
such a surface, some of its energy is reflected, some is absorped,
and some is transmitted through the boundary and again propagated
as sound waves on the other side.

All three effects may vary with frequency and with the angle of
incidence. Mostly, they do not vary with sound intensity.
Over the range of sound pressures commonly encountered
in audio work, most construction materials have the same
characteristics of reflection, absorption and transmission
whether struck by weak or strong sound waves.


  1. With this knowledge, one can come to the conclusion that rounded, soft edges can break up sound waves enough to not let them penetrate harder substances found behind these sound insulators.

  2. Huh. I always wondered how sound proof rooms work. Nice info.

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