• How is ultrasonic sound used in industry? 
  • Expert Answers

    An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

    Ultrasonic sound, also known as ultrasound, is produced by sound waves that have frequencies so high that they cannot be heard by the human ear. Explanations of four applications of ultrasonic sound within industry are provided below.

    1. Cleaning

    Many industries use ultrasonic sound to clean. Ultrasonic cleaning is beneficial because it does not use a brush, which can scrape surfaces. Ultrasonic cleaning is mostly used on hard surfaces, such as metals, glass, ceramics, and plastics.

    2. Plastic welding

    The process was invented in the 1960's and used to weld toys, appliances, and car parts.

    3. Metal welding

    This process was developed in the 1950's and used mostly on semiconductors and high conductivity metals. Metal welding is beneficial because it produces relatively low amounts of heat and low amounts of distortion experienced by the metals.

    4. Sonar

    Sonar stands for sound navigation & ranging. Ultrasonic waves are emitted into the water. The waves hit objects and are reflected back to the sonar device. Submarines, scuba divers, and fishing trawlers can determine how far an object is by the amount of time it takes for the reflected wave to return to the sonar device.


    Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

    We’ll help your grades soar

    Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

    • 30,000+ book summaries
    • 20% study tools discount
    • Ad-free content
    • PDF downloads
    • 300,000+ answers
    • 5-star customer support
    Start your 48-Hour Free Trial