Audio Universe

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What is Audio Universe?

We require powerful telescopes to see most of the light-emitting objects in the Universe. Most of that light is not even visible to the human eye. Using senses in addition to sight, such as listening, can enable us to explore and appreciate more accurately features in astronomical data. Additionally, this avenue of multi-sensory research and communication is more accessible to those who are blind or vision impaired (BVI). By representing objects or phenomena through sound, we hope to make new scientific discoveries and to increase accessibility in astronomy. Audio Universe is a collection of tools and resources for scientists (of all levels), for the general public and for educators to help accomplish just that. It is brought to you by researchers in collaboration with several partners, including members of the BVI community.

Goals

Research

We aim to help researchers uncover new insights in astronomical data by developing multi-sensory tools and methods. By using sound as well as visuals opens up huge potential to make new discoveries.

Outreach and Education

We aim to bring the wonders of the Universe to people at all levels in an accessible and engaging way, by developing multi-sensory outreach and educational resources.

Accessibility

For both our Research and our Outreach & Education work we have an underlying aim to bring the wonders of the Universe to people at all levels (from school pupils to academics) in an accessible way, with a focus for those who are blind, are visually impaired or have low vision.

Audio Universe: Working with partners

Hear from Audio Universe's Chris Harrison and teacher Rachel Lambert about the motivations for our Audio Universe project and how we are working with members of the community to develop our resources. This includes our flagship engagement project to date: an accessible sonification-based astronomy show. This 4 minute video was released with to celebrate winning an Engagement and Place Award at Newcastle University in 2022.

Audio Universe technical lead, James, introduces sonification

James Trayford, is interviewed as part of "Physics Chat" from the Field of View podcast, to explain our different motivations for turning data into sound and provides some examples from his sonification code STRAUSS. He then introduces his astronomy research on galaxy formation! 14 minute YouTube vide of this is here!

News and Events

Special Sonification Edition in Nature Astronomy and Panelist for UN webinar

Audio Universe named winner of the Early Career Academic Award at the Newcastle University Engagement and Place Awards 2022

"Audio Universe: Tour of the Solar System" selected to be screened at Fulldome Festival Brno

Audio Universe: Tour of the Solar System featured on BBC Radio 4's "In Touch"

Audio Universe: Tour of the Solar System premiers in England and Italy