Worldwide Campaign to stop the Abuse and Torture of Mind Control/DEWs

American Psychologist article: 1973 Voice to Skull Demonstration
Artificial microwave voice to skull transmission was successfully demonstrated by researcher Dr. Joseph Sharp in 1973, announced at a seminar from the University of Utah in 1974, and in the journal "American Psychologist" in the March, 1975 issue, article title "Microwaves and Behavior" by Dr. Don Justesen. USE YOUR BROWSER'S ZOOM FEATURE TO MAKE READING THE SCANS EASIER. (Try the “View” menu.)


V2K (voice to skull), in 2002, the Air Force Research Laboratory patented precisely such a technology: Nonleghal weapon which includes
(1) a neuro-electromagnetic device which uses microwave transmission of sound into the skull of persons or animals by way of pulse-modulated microwave radiation; and
(2) a silent sound device which can transmit sound into the skull of person or animals. NOTE: The sound modulation may be voice or audio subliminal messages. One application of V2K is use as an electronic scarecrow to frighten birds in the vicinity of airports.

Electronics behind voice to skull

There are 2 types of voice to skull:
1. The pulsed microwave method: every time the voice wave goes from positive to negative we generate a microwave pulse. For every pulse the brain hears a click. All these clicks are a form of digital audio. This goes through walls.
2. The silent sound method: a steady tone is frequency modulated with a voice wave. The ear hears hissing, but the brain hears a voice. This is a form of analog audio. This doesn't go through walls.
Then we can combine the 2 methods: we use the output of method 2 as the input of method 1. This goes through walls.


MEDUSA (Mob Excess Deterrent Using Silent Audio) is a directional, non-lethal weapon designed for crowd control and exploiting the microwave auditory effect. It uses microwave pulses to generate uncomfortably high noise levels in human skulls, bypassing the ears and ear drums.

MEDUSA is developed by the Sierra Nevada Corporation

A device - dubbed MEDUSA (Mob Excess Deterrent Using Silent Audio) - exploits the microwave audio effect, in which short microwave pulses rapidly heat tissue, causing a shockwave inside the skull that can be detected by the ears. A series of pulses can be transmitted to produce recognisable sounds. The device was aimed for military or crowd-control applications, but may have other uses. 


Microwave ray gun controls crowds with noise,

03 July 2008 by David Hambling


NASA Develops System To Computerize Silent, "Subvocal Speech"



NLPis the program that is behing the "voices" by V2K :

"NLP is the branch of computer science focused on developing systems that allow computers to communicate with people using everyday language."           


Summary Information

Objective of Phase Effort

The main goal of the Phase I project wad to design and build a breadboard prototype of a temporary personnel incapacitation system called MEDUSA (Mob Excess Deterrent Using Silent Audio). This non-lethal weapon is based on the well established microwave auditory effect (MAE). MAE results in a strong sound sensation in the human head when it is irradiated with specifically selected microwave pulses of low energy. Through the combination of pulse parameters and pulse power, it is possible to raise the auditory sensation to the “discomfort” level, deterring personnel from entering a protected perimeter or, if necessary, temporarily incapacitating particular individuals.

Summary of Results from the Phase I Effort

The major results of the Phase I effort were that - An operating frequency was chosen - Hardware requirements were established (commercial magnetron, high-voltage pulse former) - Hardware was designed and built - Power measurements were taken and the required pulse parameters confirmed - Experimental evidence of MAE was observed

Potential Applications and Benefits

Potential applications of the MEDUSA system are as a perimeter protection sensor in deterrence systems for industrial and national sites, for use in systems to assist communication with hearing impaired persons, use by law enforcement and military personnel for crowd control and asset protection. The system will: be portable, require low power, have a controllable radius of coverage, be able to switch from crowd to individual coverage, cause a temporarily incapacitating effect, have a low probability of fatality or permanent injury, cause no damage to property, and have a low probability of affecting friendly personnel.
Patented applications
Flanagan GP. Patent #3393279 “Nervous System Excitation Device” USPTO granted 7/16/68.
Puharich HK and Lawrence JL. Patent #3629521 “Hearing systems” USPTO granted 12/21/71.
Malech RG. Patent #3951134 “Apparatus and method for remotely monitoring and altering brain waves” USPTO granted 4/20/76.
Thijs VMJ. Application #WO1992NL0000216 “Hearing Aid Based on Microwaves” World Intellectual Property Organization Filed 1992-11-26, Published 1993-06-10.


4858612 – Hearing device – A condensed summary states that “This invention provides for sound perception by individuals who have impaired hearing resulting from ear damage, auditory nerve damage, and damage to the auditory cortex. This invention provides for simulation of microwave radiation which is normally produced by the auditory cortex. Stocklin, August 22, 1989

4877027 – Hearing system – A condensed abstract states that “Sound is induced in the head of a person by radiating the head with microwaves...” Brunkan, October 31, 1989

5159703 - A silent communication system [which] relates in general to electronic audio signal processing and, in particular, to subliminal presentation techniques. Lowery, October 27, 1992.

6587729 – Apparatus for audibly communicating speech using the radio frequency hearing effect. O'Loughlin, et al. July 1, 2003

Mardirossian A. Patent #6011991 “Communication system and method including brain wave analysis and/or use of brain activity” USPTO granted 1/4/00.

O'Loughlin, James P. and Loree, Diana L. Patent #6470214 "Method and device for implementing the radio frequency hearing effect" USPTO granted 22-OCT-2002.


Video:  V2K Documentary appx 15 mins

Here is a V2K documentary, it has a theme of a reasonable argument:


Book Twelve Years in the Grave - Mind Control with Electromagnetic Spectrums, the Invisible Modern Concentration Camp”, authored by Soleilmavis Liu, provides the sound facts and evidence about the secret abuse and torture with remote voice-to-skull and electromagnetic mind control technologies.

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Acoustic Trauma : Bioeffects of Sound   

Alex Davies BFA Honours   

"…any unwanted sound, soft or loud, sweet or nasty, creates a multidimensional envelope that does more than intrude - it takes over not only your acoustic space, but your mind space as well. Acoustic intrusions reduce your freedom of thought. There is no escaping sound. It meets your body and forcibly enters your mind, not just through your ears but also via your bones, your flesh, and your body cavities." 

The work is an investigation into the effects of low frequency sound and infrasound via the design and construction of experimental acoustic emitters. Once installed in a particular space the work will have a profound effect on the surrounding sonic environment and the physiology of human subjects present. This is achieved by the resonant interactions between the subject’s body and the acoustic space.  

It is beyond the limited scope of this paper to explore the physicality of sound and psychoacoustics in its entirety due to the vast nature of the subject area. However, this paper will investigate various key facets of the field relating to the work.  


Human Auditory Perception 



It is important to give some technical insight into the nature of sound in order to gain an understanding of the concerns and issues raised in this paper.

It is generally accepted that sound is perceptible to humans in the range of 20hz to 20khz (1Hz is one complete cycle per second of a sinusoidal wave). Although this is the accepted human auditory range most people, depending on age and gender, cannot hear sound above 14 to 18Khz. Contrary to popular assumption, careful measurements have shown that hearing does not abruptly stop at 20 Hz but the ear is capable of registering infrasound as low as 1Hz if sound pressure is sufficient. Frequencies above 20 kHz are considered ultrasound whilst frequencies beneath 20Hz are considered infrasound.

The range of audible sound is also differentiated into 3 main categories. Subsonic or low frequency sound is defined in the range of 20Hz to about 500Hz. Midrange frequencies inhabit the realm of 500Hz to 6KHz (6000Hz) with high frequency sound defined in the remaining 6KHz to 20KHz. To give these figures some relevance to tangible notions of sound, the musical tone of Middle C is 261.6 Hz.

Although acoustic energy in all areas of both audible and non audible frequencies display intriguing biological effects, the particular regions of sound that the work focuses on is in the subsonic and infrasound region.

There are two other key aspects of low frequency sound and infrasound that are worth noting. The first is that low

frequency sound has a relatively long wavelength and low material absorption rate, hence has the ability to travel vast distances. These properties make it possible to achieve a profound effect on vast tracts of acoustic space with the production of high sound pressure level (SPL) acoustic waves. The second issue regarding low frequency sound is that it is very non directional in it’s propagation and therefore has the effect of enveloping the individual without any discernable localized source. 

The opposite of these properties is characteristic of high frequency sound which can readily be absorbed by materials and is highly directional and as such has been an asset in the design of acoustic weapons. 

The perceived loudness of a sound is measured in a unit called the decibel (dB). The decibel utilizes a logarithmic scale rather than a linear one, as the human ear perceives loudness in a similar manner. A 3dB increase equates to an actual doubling of the sound level. However, perceptively, a 10dB sound level increase is considered to be about twice as loud.Frequency and perceived loudness are intrinsically linked, with greater intensity sound being required at low frequencies to produce the same amount of perceived loudness.  

All objects have a property known as resonant frequency. Resonance involves the "re-enforcement of vibrations of a receiving system due to a similarity to the frequencies of the source". One of the most famous examples of natural resonance is Tacoma Narrows Bridge at Puget Sound Washington. After being exposed to gusts of wind the bridge began to vibrate at its natural resonant frequency and subsequently began to swing wildly and finally shake itself to pieces.

In a similar manner sound may be exploited and tuned to particular resonant frequencies inherent in humans. It is this way that sound can be utilized to provide a diverse range of psychophysiological effects.

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Physiological Effects of Sound

Any severe extreme imposed on the sonic environment has a profoundly destabilizing effect on the individual. This becomes evident in both the areas of high intensity acoustic energy and also its complete absence. Anechoic chambers, which create an environment void of sound, have the ability to produce similar feelings of disorientation and disturbance that are evident with high intensity sound. The silence envelops the individual in a suffocating manner causing both psychological trauma and also physiological disturbance in the form of balance and other related body function.

It is clearly apparent that the human organism is in an extremely delicate state of equilibrium with the sonic environment and any profound disturbance of this system will have subsequent ramifications on the individual.

Although various facets of acoustic ecology have been examined there is little publicly available material on the effects of low frequency sound on humans. Thus, speculation and unsupported allegations related to the field have become prevalent. This lack of available research material is predominantly due to the fact that the Department Of Defense and related private research organizations conduct the majority of experimental research in this arena and hence the material is often of a restricted nature. Jürgen Altmann conducted the only extensive survey of the area in 1999 although this was of a purely theoretical nature without any experimental research.

What also becomes apparent after a survey of the literature is that much of the material available is conflicting in nature. This adds further to the general mystery and confusion surrounding the area and promotes the rapid spread of mythologies and misinformation on the subject, highlighting an obvious need for a current comprehensive experimental study to be undertaken.

References to sound as a violent entity date from the biblical trumpets that brought down the walls of Jericho to current trends in acoustic weapons research including the work conducted by organizations such as Scientific Applications And Research Associated Incorporated (SARA). Various musicians such as The Halfer Trio and Throbbing Gristle have utilized these assaultive sonic properties in live performances with alleged degrees of success. Entire musical compositions have been composed around the manipulative qualities of sound.

In a 1973 article in Crawdaddy ,William Burroughs discusses such notions with Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin fame. He asked Page about the potential of using infrasound to enhance the musical experience and produce euphoric effects. However, the article tends to deliver broad and hazy allegations regarding low frequency sound

such as ‘he (Vladimir Gavreau) had an infrasound installation that he could turn on and kill everything within five miles. It can also knock down walls and break windows. But it kills by setting up vibrations within the body’. Such statements are typical of the alleged effects of low frequency and infrasound on the body. Where Burroughs obtained such a figure from is unknown as no reference was made to such a device or physiological effect in Gavreau’s own writings. Statements like the one above continue to propagate rumors, and in a similar manner to ‘Chinese whispers’ these are slowly distorted over time.  

The pinnacle of sensational notions related to low frequency and particularly infrasound came after the publication of Gavreau’s findings in Science Journal in 1968. At this time a variety of unsubstantiated and sensational reports appeared in the media, such as the Miami Herald’s article relating to Gavreau’s work entitled ‘Sound Ray Developed as A Killer — French Working On A War Machine’ ,and the London Observer’s report on the 7th January 1968 "Sound As a Weapon Of War". Perhaps the most sensational and absurd effects attributed to infrasound was reported in the Melbourne Sunday Press (7th September 1973). Entitled "The Low Pitched Killer", the article is concerned with the lethal effects of infrasound generated by open car windows. This document, as well as "Does Infrasound Make Drivers Drunk" published in New Scientist 1972, claimed that infrasound generated by automotive travel is responsible for a variety of dubious physiological effects including ‘motorway madness’.

Typically sensational, the article states:

"But much more sinister are the unnoticed effects of infrasound at lower levels: in an ordinary car travelling at speed the infrasound noise is more than enough to mimic the effect of drunkenness in the driver. With the sense of euphoria that infrasound also induces, it may therefore be responsible for many inexplicable crashes."

It is no wonder that with absurd statements published in respected journals such as New Scientist, these ideas are evident within the population.Though these effects could perhaps be attributed to vibratory effects generated by automobiles, due to the large impedance mismatch, low frequency sound at such levels would have an insignificant impact at such levels.

Although there is no doubt that the sonic environment has considerable impact on the individual, it is quite evident with comprehensive theoretical analysis that the majority of claims in the area are sensational.

Audible Sound

Audio in the region of 20Hz-20Khz can create psychological disturbance in individuals at levels substantially below those required for bodily discomfort or trauma.

From the thunderous hypnotic drumming of Zulu warriors to riot police beating their batons on shields whilst marching towards confrontation, the psychological effects of sound have been used extensively throughout history as a warfare device. Noise has always been experienced as ‘destruction, disorder, dirt, pollution, and aggression’. All cultures associate noise with the idea of the weapon, blasphemy and plague. "Behold, I will bring evil upon this place, the which whosoever heareth, his ears shall tingle" (Jeremiah 19.3)". "When the drums of the resurrection sounded, they filled the ears with fear" (Al-Din Runir, Diavani, Shansi Tabriz).

Recently, psycho-acoustic warfare was allegedly used in the Waco siege at the Davidian compound in Texas, where it is said that the FBI used sounds of babies crying, dentist drills and a variety of other unpleasant sounds to mentally influence their opponents. The Waco compound was allegedly bombarded for long durations by these sounds via large public address systems.

Although this type of sonic assault can have a profound emotive effect on individuals, it relies heavily on the individuals particular experiences. This is where the actual physiological effects of sound are unique. Physiological changes in the body only start to occur at greater sound pressure levels. At about 120 dB discomfort begins in the ear and pain occurs when levels reach approximately 140dB.The eardrum subsequently ruptures at levels of about 160 dB. Pain becomes evident when the middle ear system is mechanically displaced beyond its normal operational limits

These acoustic effects are only apparent on the ear mechanism. The ear is a very easy structure to attack. Due to evolutionary processes the ear is particularly sensitive to midrange frequencies inherent in the human voice. Subsequently, all that is needed is an increased sound intensity at these frequencies for the threshold of pain to be readily reached. This is also related to the properties of the acoustic reflex in which a small muscle in the

middle ear pulls the stirrup back from the oval window and subsequently reduces the amount of acoustic energy transmitted to the middle ear. This however only has a significant impact at frequencies lower than about 1000 Hz so that frequencies between 500 to 4000 Hz, the range at which the auditory center is most sensitive, are largely unaffected.

The acoustic effects on the body are more complex. Research has concluded that with low frequency sound in the region of 50 — 100Hz at levels of 150dB or more, intolerable sensations in the chest and thoracic region can be produced–even with the ears protected.

Other physiological changes that occur include chest wall vibration and some respiratory-rhythm changes in human subjects, together with sensations of hypopharyngeal fullness (gagging). The frequency range between 50-100Hz also produces mild nausea and giddiness at levels of 150-155 dB, at which point subjective tolerance is reached. At 150 to 155 dB (0.63 to 1.1 kPa); respiration-related effects include subcostal discomfort, coughing, severe substernal pressure, choking respiration, and hypopharyngeal discomfort.

Vladimir Gavreau, who worked extensively with high SPL low frequency sound at the Centre National De La Recherché Scientific states, after being subjected for five minutes to an acoustic emitter producing 196Hz at levels of 160 dB, "we became aware of a painful resonance within our bodies-everything inside us seemed to vibrate when we spoke or moved." These feelings subsequently disappeared after a period of three hours.

At medium to high audio frequencies the pronounced visceral effects that are evident with low frequency vibration are absent. However, disturbance of the equilibrium can be achieved at levels above 140 dB for unprotected ears. At even higher levels, tickling sensations and heating may occur in air-filled cavities such as those of the nose and mouth and gaps between the fingers. A 7kHz acoustic beam at a level of 165 dB produced the sensation of strong heating between the fingers of the subject that were being held close together. This was due to the high degree of friction that was created although the effect vanished when the fingers were subsequently opened apart.

High audio frequencies (above 10 kHz) and ultrasound (above 20kHz) have no pronounced effect on the individual unless the level is in the range of 140dB with more prominent effects of heating of air cavities, hair and textiles becoming apparent at levels of 160dB. Various assaultive acoustic devices have been designed to operate within this audio region. Most of these devices utilize a sonic property called heterodyning in which 2 differing frequencies combine to form the sum and difference of the initial frequencies.For example, the frequencies of 16000 Hz and 16002 Hz can be combined in the ear to form 32000Hz and 2Hz. Devices operating in the ultrasonic region in this manner also have the added advantage of operating in a very directional and focussed manner at an imperceptible frequency region.


The threshold for infrasound is around 140dB at 20Hz increasing to about 162dB at 2 Hz and to 175-180dB for static pressure.Due to the ethical issues regarding testing human subjects, experiments on dogs were conducted at levels of 170dB at a frequency of 0.5 Hz. Curiously the dogs stopped breathing because of lung ventilation due to the high intensity pressure changes, although the 0.5 Hz frequency of the sound acted as an artificial respirator and the dogs showed no ill effects afterwards.Many of the most profound effects of sound are attributed to infrasound in the region of 7Hz. This corresponds with the median alpha-rhythm frequencies of the brain.It is also commonly alleged that this is the resonant frequency of the body’s organs and hence organ rupture and death can occur at high intensity exposures.

Impulse noise

Shock waves from explosive blasts produce varying and perhaps the most dramatic effects in the realm of acoustic devices. At moderately high levels in the region of 140 dB temporary hearing loss occurs, which can become permanent at higher values. At acoustic levels above 185 dB the tympanic membrane begins to rupture.

At acoustic levels of about 200 dB, lungs begin to rupture, and above about 210 dB some deaths will occur.

Sonic Violence

"Noise is violence: it disturbs. To make noise is to interrupt a transmission, to disconnect, to kill."

An acoustic attack works on several levels. The first is physiological changes that take place within the body. These vary and are directly relational to the frequency of the sound and the intensity. Next is the isolation of the individual from the environment. Not only would high intensity sound effectively mask all other sound thereby rendering the user deaf to the immediate environment, but it would also make him/her powerless in the realm of vocal communication. With the loss of effective speech comes feelings of helplessness and confusion. Humans are able to selectively filter various aspects of their immediate sonic environment to extract particular fragments from the soundscape. Such auditory filtering systems inherent in human sound perception would be rendered useless as the individual is enveloped by high intensity sound.

Low frequency sound and particularly infrasound have intrinsically mysterious effects as they generally bypass the ear mechanism and are predominantly felt and not heard. This coupling of sound directly to the body may be responsible for feelings of anxiety due to a lack of cognitive resolution within the individual.

Psychotropic Warfare

It is the human condition to try and find answers for inexplicable events or phenomena. Sonic weapons are often embraced in this capacity, as they are not only often imperceptible to the ear in their operation but also are capable of extensive physical and behavioural control. As a result sonic violence has also become a prevalent theme in the area of conspiracy theorists and ‘mind control’ victims. This has lead to the loss of credibility in an area that has an extremely significant impact on the human organism.

The aims of such systems are to influence and manipulate neural activity or to confuse or destroy the signals that normally keep the body in equilibrium. One such group of devices are silent communication systems in which non-aural carriers in the infrasound or ultrasound range are propagated acoustically or vibrationally for inducement into the brain.

They may be used to "artificially implant negative emotional states - feelings of fear, anxiety, despair and hopelessness."Such a device is outlined in the 1992 US Patent #5,159,703.

The American Defense news in 1993 describes "acoustic psycho-correction" experiments carried out by the Russians from the mid 1970’s which "could be used to suppress riots, control dissidents, demoralize or disable opposing forces". The device which operated by the "transmission of specific commands via static or white noise" showed "encouraging results after exposure of less than one minute" and operated without the upsetting of other intellectual functions.Operating as an infrasound device the acoustic psycho-correction message is transmitted via bone conduction. Due to this insidious facet, earplugs prove fruitless in protecting the individual, as whole body protection is needed. Further developments of such devices utilizing sonic communication directly to the temporal lobe may produce the most striking and profound acoustic attack. Literature by Silent Sounds, Inc. indicates that it is now possible to analyze human emotional EEG patterns and replicate them, then store these "emotion signal clusters" and, at will, "silently induce and change the emotional state in a human being".

Again, in much the same manner as the alleged effects of infrasound and low frequency sound, misinformation and sensationalism shroud data in this arena. Perhaps even more so in the case of psychological assaults, as notions of control over the will of other individuals has been sought since the dawn of humanity. One cannot help but think in the following statement that profound psychological disturbances are present when common individuals appear to be victims of extensive mind control harassment. It is apparent that the sensationalist public opinion regarding acoustic weapons and control devices is being readily drawn upon by individuals to justify and explain maladies and aberrations of the body and mind.

"Don't EVER let a psychiatrist tell you voices in your head must indicate mental illness any more! Voice to skull radio transmission is now a de-classified documented reality".

Psychotropic acoustic violence may not only work on direct speech /sound to skull transmissions but also on the manipulation of various brain functions. This psychophysical principle is called entrainment and acts on both subtle and pronounced ways. Entrainment is the foundation of music for dances, marches and work songs. Society often looks upon sound and the acoustic environment as a form of wallpaper yet rarely considers the myriad of psychophysiological influences always present. Trance inducing properties are evident at 60 beats per minute with a frequency of 72 Hz, corresponding to the frequency of human heartbeats. Frequencies corresponding to the Alpha, Beta and Theta brain rhythms have been utilized in similar manners to influence

neural activity. This is perhaps why the fabled infrasound frequency of 7 Hz is so notorious as it is the median frequency of the brain’s theta rhythms. This frequency is most prominently associated with moods concerned with fear and anger. Incidentally psychopaths have a general dominance of theta rhythms. It is also allegedly the average resonant frequency of the body’s organs and hence excitation would cause organ rupture and death.

Acoustic Ecology  



"Noise becomes a parasite which threatens to dominate the environment in the same way as weeds choke a vacant block"

Natural Sources of Low Frequency Sound:

Ever since the dawn of life on earth organisms have been exposed to low frequency sound and vibration. Though ever present, the effects of such environmental sound would not begin to have a profound impact on the acoustic ecology and inhabitants until the advent of the industrial revolution. It was only then that sounds of extremely high intensity became prevalent. Prior to this these sounds were the consequence of remarkably rare environmental events.

There are several predominant sources of naturally occurring low frequency and infrasound in the environment. The entire globe is in a continual dynamic state of enveloping low frequency sound. Sources of such low frequency sound range from atmospheric winds in the range of 30 to 40 Hz to those produced by the ocean and other turbulent bodies of water. Ocean waves produce sound with a mean frequency of 16Hz. These frequencies can become more pronounced if unique geographical conditions are present and the frequency produced by the water is the same as the resonant frequency of the environment such as in bays. The thunderous crashing torrents of water in waterfalls are strong emitters of infrasound as is the gigantic shearing and fracturing of icebergs. It has been said that such low frequency tones have a continuing effect on those inhabiting such environments. Deep seismic shocks produced by earthquakes send strong infrasonic impulses to the surface of the earth. Animals are notoriously sensitive to such vibrations displaying erratic and anxious behavior well before any human perceives the impending chaos.

The explosive force of Krakatoa in August 26 —27 1883 produce massive intensities of low frequency sound and is in fact considered to be the loudest noise on earth in living memory. The apocalyptic blast was heard over nearly one — thirteenth of the entire surface of the globe at a distance of nearly 4500-Km.

Though these sounds are ever-present in the acoustic space that individuals inhabit on a day to day basis, their influence on the individuals psychological and most certainly physiological state are subdued when compared to the influence of machines.

The advent of the industrial revolution has promoted a flourish of diverse interest in acoustic ecology and the subsequent effects on society and the individual. This period has proved to be a truly unique era in acoustic ecology as sounds generated by machines powered by inhuman sources has meant that sounds readily exceed conventional human limits. Machines also have the unique properties to produce sounds that force human systems to resonate in inhuman ways.

Individuals exploring this area range from John Cage to Russulo and the Futurist Artists. Cage, generally renown for his interest in miniature sound also examined the nature of loud sounds. When asked in a 1977 interview for radio France whether there were any ‘poisonous’ sounds Cage responded "I haven’t heard any. And I have been searching. I even made the experience to hear a very loud sound". Cage refers to an incident whilst attending a concert of the Spanish group Zai. He "sat in front of the speaker for an hour turning first one ear and then the other towards it". When it stopped he states, "my ears were ringing. The ringing continued through the night, through the next day and through the next night".

Although society and the individual have embraced the machine and the industrial revolution and although utilized, it is indeed rare that a fondness for such sounds is present. Machine noise is responsible for the greatest intensity of sonic pollution present in society. Contrary to the aversions of society in general the Futurist musicians such as Russulo and Marinetti joyously embraced the noises of war. Building devices called Inonarumori to simulate these horrific sounds, musical works were constructed with these psychologically unpleasant noises.

Prior to this, in a musical context, loud sounds were traditionally "generated by the lungs and limbs of performers grouped together in massive numbers."Now however machines could be utilized as instruments. One such mechanical performance is highlighted in a disastrous rendition of George Antheil’s Ballet Mechanique in 1927.

"When the conductor Eugene Goosens gave the cue, the siren player cranked and then cranked

feverishly, but absolutely no sound was produced. The moment for the siren was now long past, and Goosens was turning to the last page of the score. Disgustedly the effect’s man stopped turning the crank, as the last bars of the ballet crashed out. And then in the silence that followed there came the unmistakable sounds of a fire siren gathering speed. Louder and louder it came as the last noted of the ballet died away, and as Goosens turned to bow to the audience and Antheil rose from the piano, it reached it’s full force. We had all of us completely forgotten the simple fact that a siren does not start making any sound until it has been energetically cranked for almost a full minute. And also we had forgotten that it does not stop shrieking simply because you stop cranking. We remembered both of these things now as the wail from the infernal red thing on the stage kept dinning in our ears, drowning out the applause of the audience, covering the sound of the people picking up their coats and hats and leaving the auditorium." 

The performance highlights the all-encompassing and pervasive nature of industrial sound. Matt Heckert’s Mechanical Sound Orchestra provides a contemporary presence of mechanical sound art and acoustic emitters. Although Heckert’s work draws upon the futurist machine music it also explores notions of the body as an instrument. One group of orchestral devices known as the ‘resonators’ create sonic environments that interact with the audiences body. Consisting of Cannon like pipes they are pulsed via a mechanically actuated diaphragm. The work is ‘music for the body, not just for the ear or the mind’. Exhibited at Biomachines, the work encouraged the audience to sit in succulent chairs and be enveloped by the variety of modulated frequencies produced.

Similar concerns also extend to the work of Eric Hobjin with the Dante Organ. The Organ is an "installation consisting of 10 to 15 flame-throwers with pillars of fire 13 to 20 meters high, creating an environment dealing with the aesthetics of violence". The thunderous sounds produced by the pipes assault the viewer, forcing them to "abandon the pure artistic aspects of the piece to deal with the real and present danger."

The use of high intensity sound in such works creates unique sonic spaces in which, as Douglas Kahn states "any performance space could be turned into a resonant chamber, much like the body of a very large instrument in which humans are played"

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Acoustic Weapons

Infrasound has been used in the context of war since WW1, although at this stage it was related to sensitive devices used to measure infrasonic emissions and hence identify the location of artillery. Though there are references to assultive acoustic devices being created as early as WW2 it was not until the 1960’s that research in the area became more vibrant. Early references to such devices come only as fragments or hearsay. One such device is explained as follows

"... consisted of a parabolic reflector, 3.2 meters in diameter, having a short tube which was the combustion chamber or sound generator, extending to the rear from the vertex of the parabola. The chamber was fed at the rear by two coaxial nozzles, the outer nozzle emitting methane, and the central nozzle oxygen. The length of the chamber was one-quarter the wavelength of the sound in air. Upon initiation, the first shock wave was reflected back from the open-end of the chamber and initiated the second explosion. The frequency was from 800 to 1500 impulses per second. The main lobe of the sound intensity pattern had a 65-degree angle of opening, and at 60 meters' distance on the axis a pressure of 1000 microbars had been measured. No physiological experiments were conducted, but it was estimated that at such a pressure it would take from 30 to 40 seconds to kill a man. At greater ranges, perhaps up to 300 meters, the effect, although not lethal, would be very painful and would probably disable a man for an appreciable length of time. Vision would be affected, and low-level exposures would cause point sources of light to appear as lines."

Whether such a device was truly effective can never really be known however there are currently several organizations conducting research in area of acoustic weapons. Due to this continuing research in the area one can speculate that there has never been a truly successful device. Interestingly this is also reflected in recent statements by research groups such as Scientific Applications and Research Associates (SARA) who have apparently taken

previous allegations on face value when quoting the alleged effects of some of the impulse noise acoustic devices under construction. Despite such extensive inconsistencies in regards to the alleged effects of acoustic energy current research still flourishes in the area. A similar, albeit more compact device to the one described above, was outlined by Primex Physics International Company in 1998. Still relying on impulse noise technology, it achieved levels of 165dB at a distance of 50 feet and "appears to have very desirable risetime and pulsewidth characteristics that are essential for optimal acoustic-psychological coupling to targets.

The applications of this current research is predominantly based in the development of non-lethal acoustic devices for use in such circumstances as "embassies under siege, for crowd control, for barriers at perimeters or borders, for area denial or area attack, to incapacitate soldiers or workers." Regarding to the non — lethal properties of such devices, the purported effects with respect to humans seem extremely inappropriate for temporary incapacitation with no long term side effects.

The most recent alleged effects from SARA’s current research are stated as:

"Infrasound at 110-130 dB would cause intestinal pain and severe nausea. Extreme levels of annoyance or distraction would result from minutes of exposure to levels 90 to 120 dB at low frequencies (5 to 200Hz), strong physical trauma and damage to tissues at 140-150 dB, and instantaneous blastwave type trauma at above 170. At low frequencies resonance’s in the body would cause hemorrhage and spasms; in the mid-audio range (0.5-2.5 kHz) resonance’s in the air cavities of the body would cause nerve irritation, tissue trauma and heating; high audio and ultrasound frequencies (5 to 30 kHz) would cause heating up to lethal body temperatures, tissue burns, and dehydration; and at high frequencies or with short pulses, bubbles would form from cavitation and micro-lesions in tissue would evolve."

If would be interesting if such allegations prove to be plausible when backed up by experimental data in the future however at this juncture it does not seem to be the case.

There are several possible paths that can be taken regarding the design of a high acoustic output device suited to sonic violence. Conventional loudspeakers are

Acoustic Weapons—A Prospective Assessment: Sources, Propagation, and Effects of Strong Sound
Jürgen Altmann
Experimentelle Physik III
Universität Dortmund, Dortmund, Germany
©May 1999
© 1999 Cornell University Peace Studies Program. All rights reserved. ISSN 1075-4857
Acoustic Weapons—A Prospective Assessment: Sources, Propagation, and Effects of Strong Sound
Jürgen Altmann
The Peace Studies Program was established at Cornell in 1970 as an interdisciplinary program concerned with problems of peace and war, arms control and disarmament, and more generally,instances of collective violence. Its broad objectives are to support graduate and post-doctoral study, research, teaching and cross-campus interactions in these fields.
Copies of Occasional Papers may be ordered from: Peace Studies Program
130 Uris Hall, Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853-7601
Table of Contents
Abstract . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iii
Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iv
1. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
1.1 Acoustic Weapons as Part of "Non-lethal" Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
1.2 Some Historic Aspects of Acoustic Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
1.3 Actual Developments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
1.4 Goals of This Report . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
1.5 General Remarks on Acoustics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
2. Effects of Strong Sound on Humans . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2.1 General Remarks on the Ear . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2.1.1 Hearing and Hearing Damage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2.1.2 Vestibular System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
2.2 Effects of Low-Frequency Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
2.2.1 Hearing Threshold and Loudness Perception at Low Frequencies . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
2.2.2 Low-Intensity Effects of Low-Frequency Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
2.2.3 High-Intensity Effects of Low-Frequency Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Effects on Ear and Hearing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Effects on the Vestibular System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Effects on the Respiratory Organs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Other Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
2.2.4 Vibration Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Effects of Whole-Body Vibration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Vibration Due to Low-Frequency Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
2.3 Effects of High-Intensity High-Frequency Audio Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
2.3.1 Effects on Ear and Hearing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
2.3.2 Non-Auditory Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
2.4 Effects of High-Intensity Ultrasound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
2.4.1 Auditory Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
2.4.2 Non-Auditory Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
2.5 Impulse-Noise and Blast-Wave Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
2.5.1 Auditory Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
2.5.2 Non-Auditory Effects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
3. Production of Strong Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
3.1 Sources of Low-Frequency Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
3.2 Acoustic Sources Potentially Usable for Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
4. Protection from High-Intensity Sound, Therapy of Acoustic and Blast Trauma . . . . . . . 44
4.1 Protection from Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
4.2 Therapy of Acoustic and Blast Trauma . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45
5. Analysis of Specific Allegations with Respect to Acoustic Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
5.1 Allegations Regarding Weapons Principles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
5.1.1 Infrasound Beam from a Directed Source? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
5.1.2 Infrasound from Non-Linear Superposition of Two Directed Ultrasound Beams 47
5.1.3 Diffractionless Acoustic "Bullets" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48
5.1.4 Plasma Created in Front of Target, Impact as by a Blunt Object . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
5.1.5 Localized Earthquakes Produced by Infrasound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
5.2 Allegations Regarding Effects on Persons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
6. Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
6.1 Effects on Humans . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
6.2 Potential Sources of Strong Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
6.3 Propagation Problems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
6.4 Further Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
6.5 General Remarks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
Appendices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60
A.1 Linear Acoustics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60
A.2 Non-Linear Acoustics—Weak-Shock Regime . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64
A.3 Non-Linear Acoustics—Production of Difference Frequency, Demodulation . . . . . . . 68
A.4 Strong-Shock Regime . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70
A.5 Infrasound Beam and Other Propagation Estimates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74
A.6 Infrasound from Non-Linear Superposition of Two Ultrasound Beams . . . . . . . . . . . . 77
A.7 Plasma Created in Front of Target, Impact as by Blunt Object . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 79
Acoustic weapons are under research and development in a few countries. Advertised as one type of non-lethal weapons, they are said to immediately incapacitate opponents while avoiding permanent physical damage. Reliable information on specifications or effects is scarce, however. The present report sets out to provide basic  information in several areas: effects of large-amplitude sound on humans, potential high-power sources, and propagation of strong sound.
Concerning the first area, it turns out that infrasound—prominent in journalistic articles —does not have the alleged drastic effects on humans. At audio frequencies, annoyance, discomfort and pain are the consequence of increasing sound pressure levels. Temporary worsening of hearing may turn into permanent hearing loss depending on level, frequency, duration, etc.; at very high sound levels, even one or a few short exposures can render a person partially or fully deaf. Ear protection, however, can be quite efficient in preventing these effects. Beyond hearing, some disturbance in balance, and intolerable sensations, mainly in the chest, can occur. Blast waves from explosions with their much higher overpressure at close range can damage other organs, at first the lungs, with up to lethal consequences.
For strong sound sources, sirens and whistles are the most likely sources. Powered, e.g., by combustion engines, these can produce tens of kilowatts of acoustic power at low frequencies, and kilowatts at high frequencies. Up to megawatt power is possible using explosions. For directed use the size of the source needs to be on the order of 1 meter, and proportionately-sized power supplies would be required.
Propagating strong sound to some distance is difficult, however. At low frequencies, diffraction provides spherical spreading of energy, preventing a directed beam. At high frequencies, where a beam is possible, non-linear processes deform sound waves to a shocked, sawtooth form, with unusually high propagation losses if the sound pressure is as high as required for marked effects on humans. Achieving sound levels that would produce aural pain, balance problems, or other profound effects seems unachievable at ranges above about 50 m for meter-size
sources. Inside buildings, the situation is different, especially if resonances can be exploited.
Acoustic weapons would have much less drastic consequences than the recently banned blinding laser weapons. On the other hand, there is a greater potential for indiscriminate effects due to beam spreading. Because in many situations acoustic weapons would not offer radically improved options for military or police, in particular if opponents use ear protection, there may be a chance for preventive limits. Since acoustic weapons could come in many forms for different applications, and because blast weapons are widely used, such limits would have to be
graduated and detailed.
This study was begun during a one-month research stay in November 1997 at the Peace Studies Program of Cornell University, Ithaca NY, USA. It was finished in spring 1998 at Experimentelle Physik III, Dortmund University, Germany.
I should like to thank the Peace Studies Program of Cornell University, in particular Judith Reppy, for inviting me as a guest researcher. I am also grateful to the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Chicago IL, USA, for providing the funds for the Technical Arms Control Project of the Peace Studies Program which financed my stay at Cornell University, and to the Ministry of Science and Research of the State of Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany for granting funds to Universität Dortmund for a project on preventive arms control for new weapons technologies under which I finished this study. Finally, thanks go to Franz Fujara of Experimentelle Physik 3, Universität Dortmund, for acting as an applicant and supporting scientifictechnical research of disarmament problems.
Jürgen Altmann
April 1999
Jürgen Altmann is with Experimentelle Physik, Universität Dortmund, D-44221 Dortmund, Germany and Bochum Verification Project, Institut für Experimentalphysik III, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, D-44780 Bochum, Germany.
1 A condensed version of this report appears in J. Altmann, "Acoustic Weapons—A Prospective Assessment," Science
and Global Security, 1999.
2 Most of the information on non-lethal weapons comes from journalistic articles in the defense or general press. The following articles and books give an overview of various problems of non-lethal weapons and provide many references:
R. Span, J. Altmann, G. Hornig, T. Krallmann, M. Rosario Vega Laso, and J. Wüster, "'Non-lethal' Weapons—
Fantasy or Prospect of More Humane Use of Force?" (in German), Dossier Nr. 17, Wissenschaft und Frieden
(June 1994); R. Kokoski, "Non-lethal Weapons: A Case Study of New Technology Developments," in SIPRI Yearbook
1994: World Armaments and Disarmament (Stockholm/Oxford: SIPRI/Oxford University Press, 1994), pp. 367-86; S. Aftergood, "The Soft-Kill Fallacy," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (September/October 1994), pp. 40-45; A. Roland- Price, "Non-Lethal Weapons: A Synopsis," in "Improving the Prospects for Future International Peace Operations— workshop Proceedings," U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment, OTA-BP-ISS-167 (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, September 1995); J. Altmann, "'Non-Lethal' Weapons," 46th Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs, Lahti, Finland, 2-7 September 1996 (to be published in Security, Cooperation and Disarmament:
The Unfinished Agenda for the 1990s [Singapore: World Scientific]) M. Dando, A New Form of Warfare—
The Rise of Non-Lethal Weapons (London and Washington: Brassey's, 1996); N. Lewer and S. Schofield, Non-Lethal
Weapons: A Fatal Attraction? Military Strategies and Technologies for 21st-Century Conflict (London and Atlantic
City, NJ: Zed Books, 1997).
There are not many systematic and comprehensive publications by proponents of non-lethal weapons. The
following references give some examples of proponents' writing: "Nonlethality: A Global Strategy Whitepaper"
(Washington, DC: U.S. Global Strategy Council, 1992); J.B. Alexander, "Nonlethal Weapons and Limited Force Options," presented to Council of Foreign Relations, New York, 27 October 1993; Milt Finger, "Technologies to Support Peacekeeping Operations," in U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment (ibid.); G. Yonas, "The Role of Technology in Peace Operations," in U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment (ibid.); C. Morris, J. Morris, and T. Baines, "Weapons of Mass Protection—Nonlethality, Information Warfare, and Airpower in the Age of Chaos," Airpower Journal 9 (1) (Spring 1995), pp. 15-29; D.A. Morehouse, Nonlethal Weapons—War Without Death (Westport, CT and London: Praeger, 1996).
For a balanced view from inside the U.S. military, see J.W. Cook, III, D.P. Fiely, and M.T. McGowan, "Nonlethal
Weapons—Technologies, Legalities, and Potential Policies," Airpower Journal 9 (Special Issue) (1995), pp. 77-
NLW developments for law-enforcement purposes are presented in considerable detail, e.g., in J. Alexander,
D.D. Spencer, S. Schmit, and B.J. Steele (eds.), Security Systems and Nonlethal Technologies for Law Enforcement
Proc. SPIE 2934 (1997).
3 Morehouse (note 2).
4 E.g.: A.W. Debban, "Disabling Systems: War-Fighting Option for the Future," Airpower Journal 7 (1) (Spring 1993), pp. 44-50; Roland-Price (note 2).

1. Introduction1
1.1 Acoustic Weapons as Part of "Non-lethal" Weapons

Glossary - Weapons Terms
Robert J. Bunker, Editor
INSS Occasional Paper 15
USAF Institute for National Security Studies
USAF Academy, Colorado

A. Acoustics

Acoustic Beam. High power, very low frequency beam emitted from weaponry under development. Envisioned to be a piston-driven or detonation-driven pulser which forces compressed air into tubes to generate a low frequency wave.

Acoustic, Blast Wave, Projector. Energy generation from a pulsed laser that will project a hot, high pressure plasma in the air in front of a target. It creates a blast wave with variable but controlled effects on hardware and troops.

Acoustic Bullets. High power, very low frequency waves emitted from one to two meter antenna dishes. Results in blunt object trauma from waves generated in front of the target. Effects range from discomfort to death. A Russian device that can propel a 10-hertz sonic bullet the size of a baseball hundreds of yards is thought to exist. Proposed fixed site defense. Also known as sonic bullets.

Acoustic, Curdler Unit. A device which is plugged into an HPS-1 sound system to produce a shrill shrieking, blatting noise. It is used to irritate and disperse rioters and had a decibel range just below that of the danger level to the human ear. It is used in night operations to produce a "voodoo" effect and effectively breaks up chanting, singing and clapping .

Acoustic, Deference Tones. Devices which can project a voice or other sound to a particular location. The resulting sound can only be heard at that location.

Acoustic, Doppler Effect Alarm. Any movement in the area between a transmitter and a receiver causes a slight variation in the sound pattern received. By measuring this variation an alarm system can be made to be activated

Acoustic, High Intensity Sound. Loud music was used by American forces to drive Manual Norriega from the Vatican Embassy in Panama in 1990. Also known as polysound.

Acoustic, HPS-1 Sound System. A 350 watt sound system with an audible voice range of 2 1/2 miles. Used by the military in Indo-China and then supplied to law enforcement. First used by police forces at San Francisco State
College and at Berkeley in the 1960s. See also Acoustic, Curdler Unit.

Acoustic, Infrasound. Very low-frequency sound which can travel long distances and easily penetrate most buildings and vehicles. Transmission of long wavelength sound creates biophysical effects; nausea, loss of bowels, disorientation, vomiting, potential internal organ damage or death may occur. Superior to ultrasound because it is "in band" meaning that its does not lose its properties when it changes mediums such as from air to tissue. By 1972 an infrasound generator had been built in France which generated waves at 7 hertz. When activated it made the people in range sick for hours.

Acoustic, Squawk Box. Crowd dispersal weapon field tested by the British Army in Ireland in 1973. This directional device emits two ultrasonic frequencies which when mixed in the human ear become intolerable. It
produces giddiness, nausea or fainting. The beam is so small that is can be directed at specific individuals in a riot situation.


Acoustic, Teleshot. Cartridge projecting a powerful sonic device delivered by a 12-gauge shotgun. Experimental use in 1972.

Acoustic, Ultrasound. A very high frequency sound whose wavelength is "out of band" making it less effective than infrasound because it losses its properties when it changes mediums. Example, from air to human tissue. Like infrasound a lot of power is required to generate these waves which create biophysical effects. See also Acoustic, Infrasound.

Acoustic Weapons

A variety of nonlethal acoustical weapons have been proposed and evaluated. Some of these are little more than fancy loud-speakers, while others involve more subtle or sophisticated processes and truely deserve the designation of acoustic weapon.

Simple high-intensity sound causes the inner ear to generate nerve impulses that register as sound. Since the inner ear also regulates spatial orientation, saturation of the inner ear by high-intensity sound may cause spatial disorientation.  For example, loud music was used by American forces to drive Manual Norriega from the Vatican Embassy in Panama in 1990.

High-intensity low-frequency sound may cause other organs to resonate, causing a number of physiological results, possibly including death. Acoustic weapons pose the hazard of being indiscriminate weapons, potentially imposing the same damage on friendly forces and noncombatants as on enemy combatants or other targets.

A low-frequency sound transducer produces sounds below the audible frequency range [below 20 Hz]. The sound transducer is driven by its own amplifier that uses the output of a low pass filter as its input. Known as infrasound, these vibrations are felt but not heard. The observer needs to be placed on a wooden platform so that the vibrations are transmitted to a suitable area.

Infrasound would be a powerful ultralow frequency (ULF) weapon that could be directional and tunable, penetrating  buildings and vehicles. High Intensity infrasound could induce disorientation and reduced sensory motor functions. At higher levels of intensity, experimental have shown that animals may cease breathing temporarily. But this has seemed to be not a very practical weapon, since large banks of speakers were required to provide directionality, and power demands were deemed excessive.

Diference Tones are more sophisticated arrays that project a sound to a specific location. The resulting sound can only be heard at that particular location as the result of interference patterns created by the interaction of sounds transmitted from multiple remote speakers.

The Curdler, a device that emits a high shrieking noise at irregular intervals, was reportedly used by the British as a means of riot control in Northern Ireland. In this case the sound is at levels lower than the pain threshold, and is intended to be annoying rather than inducing disorientation.

The American Technology Corporation (ATCO) has produced a Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD), a  long-range hailing and warning directed acoustic beam device. LRAD was developed to communicate at operational ranges with authority and superior intelligibility in high ambient noise environments. LRAD systems are in operational use or evaluation in maritime, check point, vehicular, airborne, and integrated system applications by the USN, USMC, US Army, and USCG. LRAD is a flat panel, multi-transducer, phase coherent emitter. Designed for highly-directional communication at 300+ meters over land and 500+ meters over water, LRAD can also issue a warning tone.

A more potent weapon under development in Russia since the early 1990s is a high powered very low frequency (VLF) modulator. Operating at frequencies below 20 KHz, the device requires a 1-2 meter dish to project a so-called "acoustic bullet." The device was attractive because the power level is adjustable. At low power, the system would cause physical discomfort, while increasing the power could induce nausea, vomiting and abdominal pains. The highest  levels can cause a person's bones to resonate, which can be quite painful.

New systems are being developed and evaluated by the US Army's Picatinny Arseanal. The Aversive Audible Acoustic Device (A3D) is a highly directional device that can be hand-held or vehicle mounted. It directs an acoustic beam, which has tailorable intensity, and is used as a public address system, to focus on a specific individual or to deliver aversive sounds to alter a combatant's behavior.

Artificial Telepathy: A Non-Lethal Weapon?

Posted by majesticonApril 29, 2011

Do you hear voices in your head? MindTech Sweden describes the dangers of “artificial telepathy”:

The experience of “Artificial Telepathy” is really not that extraordinary. It’s as simple as receiving a cell-phone call in one’s head.

Indeed, most of the technology involved is exactly identical to that of cell-phone technology. Satellites link the sender and the receiver. A computer “multiplexer” routes the voice signal of the sender through microwave towers to a very specifically defined location or cell. The “receiver” is located and tracked with pinpoint accuracy, to within a few feet of actual location. But the receiver is not a cell phone. It’s a human brain.

Out of nowhere, a voice suddenly blooms in the mind of the target. The human skull has no “firewall” and therefore cannot shut the voice out. The receiver can hear the sender’s verbal thoughts. The sender, in turn, can hear all of the target’s thoughts, exactly as if the target’s verbal thoughts had been spoken or broadcast. For this reason, the experience could be called “hearing voices” but is more properly described as “artificial telepathy”.

Now, if artificial telepathy were entirely voluntary, like a conversation between friends sitting across the room from one other, it might be kind of cool. One could talk back and forth with one’s friend, exchanging verbal thoughts exactly as if speaking on the phone, but without ever using one’s voice or mouth. It’s a completely silent, subvocal form of speech. Between lovers, this would be beautiful.

The problem is that artificial telepathy provides the perfect weapon for mental torture and information theft. It provides an extremely powerful means for exploiting, harassing, controlling, and raping the mind of any person on earth. It opens the window to quasi-demonic possession of another person’s soul.

When used as a “nonlethal” weapons system it becomes an ideal means for neutralizing or discrediting a political opponent. Peace protestors, inconvenient journalists and the leaders of vocal opposition groups can be stunned into silence with this weapon…

[continues at MindTech Sweden]

The Voice of God Weapon Returns

The Voice  of God weapon — a device that projects voices into your head to make you  think God is speaking to you — is the military’s equivalent of an urban  myth.  Meaning, it’s mentioned periodically at defense workshops  (ironically, I first heard about it at the same defense conference where I first  met Noah), and typically someone whispers about it actually being used. Now  Steven Corman, writing at the COMOPS journal, describes  his own encounter with this urban myth:

At a government workshop some time ago I head someone describe a new   tool that was described as the “voice of Allah.” This was said to be a device   that would operate at a distance and would deliver a message that only a   single person could hear. The story was that it was tested in a conflict   situation in Iraq and pointed at one insurgent in a group, who whipped around   looking in all directions, and began a heated conversation with his   compatriots, who did not hear the message. At the time I greeted this story   with some skepticism.

Is there any basis to this technology? Well, Holosonic Research Labs and American Technology Corporation both have  versions of directed sound, which can allow a single person to hear a message  that others around don’t hear. DARPA appears to be working on its own sonic  projector. Intriguingly, Strategy  Page reports that troops are using the Long Range  Acoustic Device as a modified Voice of God weapon:

It appears that some of the troops in Iraq are using "spoken"   (as opposed to "screeching") LRAD to mess with enemy fighters. Islamic   terrorists tend to be superstitious and, of course, very religious. LRAD can   put the "word of God" into their heads. If God, in the form of a voice that   only you can hear, tells you to surrender, or run away, what are you gonna   do?

And as Corman also notes, CNET recently wrote  about an advertisement in New York for A&E’s TV show Paranormal State,  which uses some of this technology. Beyond directed sound, it’s long been known  that microwaves  at certain frequencies can produce an auditory effect that sounds like it’s  coming from within someone’s head (and there’s the nagging question of  classified microwave work at Brooks Air Force Base, that the Air Force  stubbornly refuses to talk about).

That brings us back to the Voice of God/Allah Weapon. Is it real or  bogus? In one version — related to me by another defense reporter — it’s not  just Allah’s voice — but an entire holographic image projected above (um, who  decides what Allah looks like?).

Does it exist? I’m not sure, but it’s funny that when you hear it  brought up at defense conferences, no one ever asks the obvious question: does  anybody think this thing will actually convince people God is speaking to them?  I’m thinking, not.

[Image Copyright (C) 2007  Holosonics]

Biological Effects of Microwaves: Thermal and nonThermal Mechanisms

Abstract: For about fifty years, it has been reported that microwave electromagnetic radiation (EMR) had effects on humans which could not be explained by detectible heating of tissue. Auditory responses to radar have been the best known of these phenomena. To account for microwave hearing, many studies in the literature have adopted a rate-of-heating hypothesis advanced by Foster and Finch in 1974. We show here that theoretical and experimental studies supporting this hypothesis are weaker than usually assumed. We develop a simple framework of understanding of EMR that may be used to explain microwave hearing as a nonthermal, nonacoustic effect. We then extend this approach to other contexts, pointing out several fundamental misconceptions confounding the field. EMR, especially wide-band EMR, primarily must have a nonthermal effect on living tissue before conversion to heat. Auditory and tactile sensations, central neurological disability, and blood pressure loss caused by EMR have been documented. Except microwave hearing, parameters of irradiation causing such effects have not been explored adequately and remain unknown. There appears not to be any forensic methodology to prove the cause of harm at nonthermal levels.
Michael Braukus Headquarters, Washington (Phone: 202/358-1979)
John Bluck Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. (Phone: 650/604-5026)
March 17, 2004

RELEASE:                  04-093

NASA Develops System To Computerize Silent, "Subvocal Speech"

NASA scientists have begun to computerize human, silent reading using nerve signals in the throat that control speech.
In preliminary experiments, NASA scientists found that small, button-sized sensors, stuck under the chin and on either side of the "Adam's apple," could gather nerve signals, and send them to a processor and then to a computer program that translates them into words. Eventually, such "subvocal speech" systems could be used in spacesuits, in noisy places like airport towers to capture air-traffic controller commands, or even in traditional voice-recognition programs to increase accuracy, according to NASA scientists.
"What is analyzed is silent, or subauditory, speech, such as when a person silently reads or talks to himself," said Chuck Jorgensen, a scientist whose team is developing silent, subvocal speech recognition at NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. "Biological signals arise when reading or speaking to oneself with or without actual lip or facial movement," Jorgensen explained.
"A person using the subvocal system thinks of phrases and talks to himself so quietly, it cannot be heard, but the tongue and vocal chords do receive speech signals from the brain," Jorgensen said.
In their first experiment, scientists "trained" special software to recognize six words and 10 digits that the researchers repeated subvocally. Initial word recognition results were an average of 92 percent accurate. The first sub-vocal words the system "learned" were "stop," "go," "left," "right," "alpha" and "omega," and the digits "zero" through "nine." Silently speaking these words, scientists conducted simple searches on the Internet by using a number chart representing the alphabet to control a Web browser program.
"We took the alphabet and put it into a matrix -- like a calendar. We numbered the columns and rows, and we could identify each letter with a pair of single-digit numbers," Jorgensen said. "So we silently spelled out 'NASA' and then submitted it to a well-known Web search engine. We electronically numbered the Web pages that came up as search results. We used the numbers again to choose Web pages to examine. This proved we could browse the Web without touching a keyboard," Jorgensen explained.
Scientists are testing new, "noncontact" sensors that can read muscle signals even through a layer of clothing.
A second demonstration will be to control a mechanical device using a simple set of commands, according to Jorgensen. His team is planning tests with a simulated Mars rover. "We can have the model rover go left or right using silently 'spoken' words," Jorgensen said. People in noisy conditions could use the system when privacy is needed, such as during telephone conversations on buses or trains, according to scientists.
"An expanded muscle-control system could help injured astronauts control machines. If an astronaut is suffering from muscle weakness due to a long stint in microgravity, the astronaut could send signals to software that would assist with landings on Mars or the Earth, for example," Jorgensen explained. "A logical spin-off would be that handicapped persons could use this system for a lot of things."
To learn more about what is in the patterns of the nerve signals that control vocal chords, muscles and tongue position, Ames scientists are studying the complex nerve-signal patterns. "We use an amplifier to strengthen the electrical nerve signals. These are processed to remove noise, and then we process them to see useful parts of the signals to show one word from another," Jorgensen said.
After the signals are amplified, computer software "reads" the signals to recognize each word and sound. "The keys to this system are the sensors, the signal processing and the pattern recognition, and that's where the scientific meat of what we're doing resides," Jorgensen explained. "We will continue to expand the vocabulary with sets of English sounds, usable by a full speech-recognition computer program."
The Computing, Information and Communications Technology Program, part of NASA's Office of Exploration Systems, funds the subvocal word-recognition research. There is a patent pending for the new technology.
Publication-size images are available on the World Wide Web at:

'Sonic cannons' emitting pain-inducing noise to be used during Olympics to keep crowds under control

  • The devices were tested by the MoD
  • Machine also to be used in Euro Championships
  • Also sends out verbal messages

By Mario Ledwith


Controversial weapons known as ‘sonic cannons’ will be used during the London Olympics, the Ministry of Defence revealed yesterday.

The devices emit a pain-inducing noise, said to be as loud as a military jet taking off, which can be used to disperse crowds.

The Long Range Acoustic Device, which is made in America, will also be used to control possible riots at the football European Championships this summer.

Olympic preparations: A Royal Marines landing craft, top, fitted with an American-made Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD) at the front, exercises with a patrol craft on the Thames

Olympic preparations: A Royal Marines landing craft, top, fitted with an American-made Long Range Acoustic Device (LRAD) at the front, exercises with a patrol craft on the Thames

The devices were tested by the MoD last week during a major security exercise before the Olympics.

They can emit noises of up to 150 decibels and are said to be highly directional, meaning security forces are able to point the devices at clear target groups.

A video of the device being used at a G20 protest in the US shows demonstrators running away covering their ears.

As well as emitting ear-splitting tones, the device can also be used to communicate verbal messages to crowds, such as telling them to disperse.

A spokesman for the MoD said the weapon would be used ‘primarily in loud hailer mode’.

Ear-piercing: The 'sonic cannon' similar to the one pictured here emits a loud pain-inducing noise. It could be used to disperse crowds during the Olympics

Ear-piercing: The 'sonic cannon' similar to the one pictured here emits a loud pain-inducing noise. It could be used to disperse crowds during the Olympics

Sound advice: As well as emitting ear-splitting tones, the device, similar to this one, can also be used to communicate verbal messages to crowds, such as telling them to disperse

Sound advice: As well as emitting ear-splitting tones, the device, similar to this one, can also be used to communicate verbal messages to crowds, such as telling them to disperse

The device has previously been used by the US Army in Iraq, while the US Navy has used them in operations against Somali pirates.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said: ‘As part of the military contribution to the police led security effort to ensure a safe and secure games, a broad range of assets and equipment is being used by our armed forces.’

The MoD is undertaking a huge security operation to deal with possible terrorist threats during the upcoming Olympic Games.

The security services caused controversy last month when they confirmed that surface-to-air missiles would be placed on top of residential flats close to the Olympic Stadium.

The ‘Higher Velocity Missile system’ will operate on the roof of Bow Quarter in east London, which houses 700 residents.
Read more:

The Audio Spotlight: Beams of Sound from Ultrasound

F. Joseph Pompei, Holosonics

Friday, March 2, 2012, 3:30pm

Spanos Auditorium

This seminar is part of the Jones Seminars on Science, Technology, and Society series.

Audio Spotlight technology allows extremely narrow beams of sound to be generated via the nonlinear interaction of ultrasound in air. Invented at MIT by Dr. Joseph Pompei, the technology has been commercialized and is now widely adapted for display applications, private listening in shared spaces, artistic use, and special effects. The physics and mathematics behind the technology will be presented, along with a live demonstration, and various real-world applications will be discussed.

About the Speaker

Dr. Joseph Pompei began his career in acoustics at 16 as the youngest engineer at Bose Corporation, continuing at Bose while earning a degree in Electrical Engineering with an Electronic Arts minor from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Recognizing the importance and underutilization of spatialized sound, he decided to pursue research in psychoacoustics at Northwestern University, earning a Master's degree. Acutely aware of the limitations of traditional loudspeakers, he had the idea of using ultrasound as an acoustic projector, calling it the "Audio Spotlight," and developed the fundamental technology at the MIT Media Lab while earning his Ph.D. Without external investors, he founded Holosonics.

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