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Why do some buildings hum in high winds? © Getty Images

Why do some buildings hum in high winds?

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Skyscrapers have been known to make some interesting sounds.

Asked by: Natasha Jenkins, London


When the wind blows across a building with recesses, louvres or other architectural features, it can start to ‘hum’, like someone blowing across the top of a bottle or a reed.

For example, the 169m-tall Beetham Tower in Manchester makes a note just below middle C. To cure the noise, engineers have to make alterations to the mass and shape of the features that are causing the problem.


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Robert is a science writer and visiting professor of science at Aston University.


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