Audio Universe

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What is Audio Universe?

Audio Universe is a collection of tools and resources to support scientists, educators, students, and the general public to represent scientific data and concepts with sound (as well as with other senses). We do this to support: (1) scientific discovery; (2) engaging and immersive educational and communications content and; (3) increased accessibility to science. This work is underpinned by our research, which we publish in a variety of journals.  Audio Universe is brought to you by scientists, from multiple institutes, who collaborate with members of the sight loss community, educators, students and others.

Nearly the entire Universe is invisible to the naked eye; so why not use senses beyond our sight to explore it, to enjoy it and to understand it?

Goals and Overview


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.


For both our Research and our 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. Check out those pages about what we are doing, and below for the communities we are working with. 

The Universe for All!

Meet Emma, a sixth form student who’s incredibly passionate about science and outer space. 

With the support of her QTVI (Qualified Teacher of Vision Impairment) Katherine, and through the work of our team, she has been able to experience the universe through sound.

The Audio Universe project explores new methods to represent data. It focuses on making the experience of learning about space, and making new scientific discoveries, accessible to all.

Prefer an audio-described version? Watch one here. 

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.

Prefer an audio-described version? Watch one here. 

Accessible education

We have produced multi-sensory classroom based activities, shows, and we are now developing resources for a science exhibition. These aim to be inclusive for students, and the general public, who are blind or have low vision and those with other Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). This 1 minute video includes SEND pupils, and their teacher, discussing the benefits of our work and collaboration with them (video credit: Newcastle City Council). 

Find out more about our education and outreach pages.


Research underpins all of our work. We are working to improve the approaches of sonification and explore how best to maximise its potential for scientific discovery.  Our team are publishing to share our knowledge, discoveries and recommendations.  In this video we hear from those researchers, who attended our multi-disciplinary workshop on sonification of astronomical data. 

You can find out more on our research pages.

Listening to our data

Datasets are becoming increasingly large and complex. This means that standard visualisation approaches are often insufficient to represent the full complexities of the data. Sonification offers an alternative to explore the data and make discoveries. In this example we can here our sonification approach to explore a three dimensional dataset. You can see an image of a galaxy, but you can hear the third spectral dimension (explanation also in YouTube description). 

You can find out more on our research pages.

News and Events