George Mason Students Invent Device To Douse Fires With Sound Waves

Screen Shot 2015-03-24 at 7.59.39 PMThis is one of the most impressive new inventions that I have seen recently and it is the work of two George Mason students. Engineering seniors Viet Tran and Seth Robertson have created a fire extinguisher using low-frequency sound waves to douse a blaze. Question: does this mean that there are never any kitchen fires in the home of Barry White?


According to George Mason, the two undergraduate students decided to try to create the system as a class project for Advanced Senior Design. A thumping bass may do more than light up a party—it could flat out extinguish it, thanks to a new sound-blasting fire extinguisher by George Mason University undergrads.

The device cost $600 to make and the students are moving to patent the design. The students knew that Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) was working on the concept as was West Georgia University but they found a relatively low-cost design that worked.

The system works by using sound waves (which are also pressure waves) to displace some of the oxygen.” As Tran explained, at a certain frequency, the sound waves “separate the oxygen [in the fire] from the fuel. The pressure wave is going back and forth, and that agitates where the air is. That specific space is enough to keep the fire from reigniting.”

Fortunately, I have my own low frequency fire extinguisher always available in my home:

Very cool.

21 thoughts on “George Mason Students Invent Device To Douse Fires With Sound Waves

  1. Sandi,

    Why, you ask? Because this is a law/lawyer blog. Its the job of lawyers to snuff out (pun intended) new ideas; find and list all the reasons it won’t work or it will create unacceptable risk and liability.

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