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The speed of sound in steel is equal to:
(A) $340m/s$
(B) $1500m/s$
(C) $3270m/s$
(D) $5100m/s$

Last updated date: 22nd Feb 2024
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IVSAT 2024
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Hint Sound is propagated as transverse waves. Sound requires a medium to travel. The velocity of sound in a solid medium will be greater than that of the velocity of sound in the air. If we know the velocity of sound in the air we can compare it with the values given in the option and find the answer.

Complete step by step answer:
The speed of the sound will vary depending on the medium through which the sound wave is propagated. The velocity of sound will be the least in gases out of the three mediums. The speed of sound will be the maximum through a solid medium. Steel is solid. The velocity of sound through steel will be greater than $5000m/s$. Therefore we can say that out of the four given options. Option (D) $5100m/s$ will give the speed of sound through steel.

The answer is: Option (D): $5100m/s$

Additional information
The sound waves will be propagating through gases only if the gas molecules collide with each other. These collisions will give rise to condensations and rarefactions. Another factor that affects the speed of sound through air is the temperature. Since the molecules in the liquid are more tightly packed than that of gases, the sound wave will travel at a much faster speed than through gases. The maximum speed of sound is attained when it travels through a solid.

Steel is a material that has large elastic properties. It is a rigid substance and it will undergo very small deformations. Steel is also known to have a higher density. All these properties of steel make the sound wave travel the fastest through steel.