Two George Mason University students invent way to extinguish fire with sound

Students Viet Tran (L) and Seth Robertson with their invention, a sound extinguisher, at the Fairfax Campus. (Photo by Alexis Glenn/Creative Services/George Mason University)

Students at a Virginia college say that they’ve developed a new way to extinguish flames with sound waves.

George Mason University engineering students Seth Robertson and Viet Tran invented a sound-blasting fire extinguisher that may revolutionize firefighting.

The video below appears to prove them right:

How does the magic work?

Low-frequency sound waves in the 30 to 60 hertz range — “the thump-thump bass in hip-hop” — can apparently separate oxygen from fuel,” Tran said in a GMU news release.

For now, the students’ extinguisher has only been utilized to put out small fires that use rubbing alcohol as fuel. But Tran and Roberston say that they hope their invention might one day be adapted for consumer or professional use.

There’s “nothing on the market that works,” Robertson told the Washington Post.

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