Here's What Outer Space Sounds Like


The news: While no one can hear you scream in space, nobody said anything about the planets and other celestial bodies.

NASA's new SoundCloud page holds a collection of decades of audio from past and present missions into space, and it includes everything from Apollo 13's infamous "Houston, we have a problem," to the radio signals sent by unmanned spacecraft as they journey far from Earth.

The collection, released on Oct. 16, is a man-made companion to previous eerie recordings of outer space by NASA.

What sounds like music from a horror movie is actually a series of electromagnetic waves that vibrate at the same frequency as the sounds we hear every day. NASA recorded the electromagnetic waves emitted in our audio spectrum from various cosmic locales like Jupiter, Saturn, Saturn's rings and even the Earth. They all sound equally atonal and unnerving. 

Together, the sounds of human exploration and outer space create a beautiful aural portrait of the heavens.

This isn't the first time NASA embarked on such a project. In 2012, NASA's Van Allen Probes plucked the radio waves out of the Earth's magnetosphere and recorded them.

"The noises, often picked up here on Earth by ham-radio operators, are called Earth's 'chorus' as they are reminiscent of a chorus of birds chirping in the early morning," wrote the Atlantic's Becca Rosen. "So here's your planet, singing its song into space."

The takeaway: It's important for us to remember that, as humans, we're only capable of experiencing a very small part of reality due to biological limitations. Recordings like these can at least open our eyes to cosmic splendor for a little while.