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The big Bengaluru boom sound mystery solved


Bengaluru, May 20: Several persons in the city have been discussing the thunderous noise that was heard earlier today.

Several persons from Sarjapur, HSR Layout, Whitefield and Hebbal said that they heard a loud thundering sound.

Was that an air craft? The loud sound that Bengalureans heard today

Many suspected that the sound was emitted due an earthquake and ran out to their homes. Bengaluru's Police Commisioner, Bhaskar Rao confirmed that there was no damage anywhere. He also said that there have been no calls made to the emergency 100 number. The HQRS Training Command, IAF, Bengaluru said no aircraft of Training Command was flying in the area. However, ASTE and HAL could have been undertaking their routine test flying, which necessitates going supersonic at times. These are done well beyond the city limits in specified sectors.

Bengaluru heard loud sounds in 2005, 2018 as well, but they remain mysteries

However, considering the atmospheric conditions and reduced noise levels in the city during these times, the aircraft sound may become clearly audible even if it happened way out from the city, the statement also read

The Ministry of Defence however clarified that it was a routine IAF Test Flight involving a supersonic profile, which took off from the Bengaluru airport and flew in the allotted airspace well outside the city limits.

"The aircraft was of Aircraft Systems and Testing Establishment (ASTE) whose Test Pilots & Flight Test Engineers routinely test out all aeroplanes," PRO Bengaluru said. The sonic boom was probably heard while the aircraft was decelerating from supersonic to subsonic speed between 36,000 and 40000 feet altitude. The aircraft was far away from the city limits when this occurred. The sound of a sonic boom can be heard and felt by an observer even when the aircraft is flying as far away as 65 to 80 kilometres away from the person," the Ministry of Defence also said.

In 2018 a similar incident was reported. There was panic among the residents after hearing a loud sound. Back then too it was clarified that the sound was not due to an earthquake.

Officials at the Karnataka State Natural Disaster Monitoring Centre said that there was no ground motion detected. The seismometers have not recorded any spoke. This would mean that the earthquake is not the source of the sound, the officials also said.

What is a sonic boom?

A sonic boom is created whenever an object travels through the air faster than the speed of sound.

A sonic boom is the result of fast movement of aircraft - the thunderous sound is produced when these objects fly overhead faster than the speed of sound.

This is a phenomenon when shock waves are created in the atmosphere when an object moves faster than the speed of sound.

Sonic booms generate enormous amounts of sound energy that is similar to an explosion or a thunderclap to the human ear.

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