The Quietest Place on Earth

There is a place so silent that no one can stay inside the chamber without light for more than an hour.

If you loved the movie A Quiet Place, you might have thought that living in a peaceful and quiet environment wouldn’t be so bad. But did you know that there is a place even quieter than the movie?

The Orfield Laboratories in Minnesota has a federally accredited testing lab that houses an anechoic chamber, which is the quietest place on earth. It is so quiet that news media, filmmakers, and visitors from all over the world come to experience the silence.

Inside the Chamber

The background noise in the chamber has a negative decibel output of -13 dBA, and instantaneous levels of -23 dBA. To put it into perspective, the background noise in a city is typically 70-110 dBA, while in rural areas, it is around 60 dBA.

Steven Orfield, the lab’s founder, challenges people to stay inside the chamber in complete darkness. Some people have managed to stay inside for an hour, while others have stayed for two hours with the lights on. The silence in the chamber makes the ears more sensitive, and one can hear their heart beating, lungs breathing, and stomach gurgling loudly.

A Disorienting Experience

The complete lack of noise in the chamber can be disorienting for most people. It is difficult to stand, sit, or navigate in the room without any visual or acoustic cues. People with autism, deafness, and high levels of mental anxiety, however, seem to enjoy the chamber.

Companies such as Whirlpool, Maytag, and GE Appliances, Medtronic medical devices, 3M audio products, and automotive switch firms, among others, use the anechoic chamber to test the noise levels of their products. The chamber at NASA is also used by astronauts to train for the silence of space.

So, do you still want that peace and quiet?

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FAQ

1. What is the world’s quietest place?

The world’s quietest place is located in the United States, in a room at Orfield Laboratories in Minneapolis. The room is so quiet that it measures -9.4 decibels, which is below the threshold of human hearing and is considered to be the quietest place in the world.

2. How is the room designed to be so quiet?

The room is designed to be incredibly soundproof, with walls that are a meter thick and made of concrete. The ceiling is also made of concrete and there are no windows or doors to let in outside noise. The floor is made of mesh and is raised off the ground to prevent vibrations from nearby sources.

3. What is it like to be in the world’s quietest place?

Being in the world’s quietest place can be a disorienting experience for some people. Without any outside noise, you can hear your own heart beating and the sound of your own breathing. Some people report feeling a sense of unease or even panic in the room.

4. Why was the world’s quietest place created?

The room was created by Orfield Laboratories to test the noise levels of various products, such as cars, appliances, and electronics. It is also used to study the effects of silence on the human body and mind.

5. How long can a person stay in the room?

Most people can only tolerate being in the room for a short period of time, usually no more than 45 minutes. This is because the lack of external stimuli can cause sensory deprivation and lead to hallucinations or other psychological effects.

6. Are there any other quiet places in the world?

There are other places in the world that are known for their quietness, such as the Hoh Rainforest in Washington state and the Muir Woods National Monument in California. However, these places are not as quiet as the world’s quietest place in Orfield Laboratories.

7. Can you hear anything at all in the world’s quietest place?

Despite being the quietest place in the world, there are still some sounds that can be heard in the room. These include the sound of blood flowing through your veins, the movement of your muscles, and the sound of your own breathing.

8. Is it possible to experience complete silence?

It is impossible to experience complete silence, as there will always be some ambient noise present, such as the sound of your own body. However, being in a quiet environment can be beneficial for relaxation and meditation.

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