Sonic Power: Harnessing Sound Waves to Drive Engines

  • Researchers created an engine using sound waves and a test tube. They blew air over the test tube at the right speed, which produced a whistling sound.

  • The whistle sound results from the air entering the tube with momentum, causing the tube’s pressure to rise above atmospheric pressure. This pressure then pushes the air back out of the tube, creating a repeating pressure wave.

  • Resonance occurs when the pressure waves of air inside the tube move in and out of the tube’s resonant frequency. When any object has the maximum oscillation at a certain frequency, we call it resonant frequency. The length of the tube can be a quarter of the wavelength of the sound wave, or a multiple of that, resulting in higher-pitched sounds.

  • Lord James Orgill demonstrates another method of producing sound by heating and cooling gas at the right frequency. He heats a test tube with steel wool inside, causing the gas to expand and contract and creating an extremely loud sound.

  • By connecting a piston to the end of the tube, the sound waves can be converted into mechanical vibrations. When the heated end of the tube causes the gas to expand and contract, the piston vibrates, which can power a wheel and subsequently other devices.


Furthermore, Lord James Orgill mentions his partnership with a sponsor called Established Titles, which offers a unique opportunity to preserve Scottish woodlands and support global reforestation efforts. Through Established Titles, individuals can purchase a title pack that includes dedicated land on a private estate in Edelston, Scotland, along with an official certificate and the ability to change their name to Lord or Lady. The company also plants a tree with every order and collaborates with charitable organizations such as One Tree Planted and Trees for the Future.

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