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13 Creepy Sounds Recorded in Space by NASA



“In space, no one can hear you scream,” reads the tagline for the original Alien movie. And that’s true: for the most part, interplanetary space is just a big bag of nothing. But that doesn’t mean it’s completely silent. In fact, its sounds may surprise you.

Human ears are specially designed to translate changing pressures traveling through a medium (i.e. sound waves). These sound waves are rendered mute once the medium they are traveling through comes to an end (say, when the atmosphere on Earth gives way to the emptiness of space). However, there are plenty of waves that can move through a vacuum. We can then translate these vacuum-friendly waves into sounds that humans can hear (that’s how things like radio transmissions work).

Over the past few decades, we’ve sent a number of satellites to the far reaches of the solar system (and beyond, as you’ll see below). For research and communication reasons, these vessels left with sensors designed to “hear” things like radio and plasma waves that flow freely through interplanetary space. Using a technological intermediary, humans are able to “hear” these space waves as audible sounds.

Turning space waves into sounds has a scientific advantage—evolution has cultivated the human brain to be really good at discerning tiny sonic nuances. This ability helped our ancestors know a growling predator was in the area and was instrumental in developing the complexities of speech. In the days before beefy analytical software, listening to audio interpretations of space waves was one of the best ways to learn what was going on.

However, on a more visceral level, these literally alien noises have a definite effect on the human brain—they’re super spooky! With Halloween just around the corner, NASA released some new space audio that’ll get you in the mood and remind you that we may not be alone in the universe.

Check out the full “Sinister Sounds of the Solar System” playlist on Soundcloud. For some throwback spooky sounds captured by NASA over the past few decades, check out our collection below.



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