# Why the speed of sound is almost 340 m/s in the air?

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#### epilot

##### Member level 2
Hello.

Why speed of sound is almost 340 m/s in the air?

I would like to know if it is the air impedance that makes the sound to travel at that speed?

hope to get any response

#### nanda_kishore

##### Member level 1
sound speed!

Hi,

If you observe.. sound speed in air is 330m/s, when inliquid it is 1497m/s and in solids is 5100m/s. This varience is because sound is a mechanical wave and it badly needs a medium to propagate..(thats why sound waves doent propagate in vaccum.)
So, you know density of (gases < liquids < solids) which means molecules(medium of propagation for sound) in gases are farther from each other when compared to liquids which inturn are again farther when compared to solids.. so a molecule should carry the sound wave to the next molecule..which takes more time in gases than in liquids which inturn takes more time than solids..

hence it takes longer time to propagate in gases.. hence lower speed in gases than liquids inturn in solids..

The loss of enery is also greater in gases than liquids inturn greater than solids..

In first line.. speed of sound in air , liquids, solids are only approx nos.. and the speed varies wrt temperature, density, altitude and other conditions.. check wikipedia for more info..

#### pmonon

##### Full Member level 3
Re: sound speed!

The speed of sound or any mech. wave depends on the density and elasticity of the medium.

#### Naveed Alam

##### Full Member level 5
Re: sound speed!

epilot said:
I would like to know if it is the air impedance that makes the sound to travel at that speed?

It depends on the type of medium.

Naveed

#### nonlinear

##### Junior Member level 3
sound speed!

The speed of sound in the medium depends on the medium properties such as density and elastic constant, the bulk modulus.

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