Car horns should be replaced by duck quacks | Sunday Observer

Car horns should be replaced by duck quacks

More pedestrian-friendly, apparently (Picture: Shutterstock)
More pedestrian-friendly, apparently (Picture: Shutterstock)

Cities could be about to get a lot more quieter after a team of researchers came up with a far more pleasant alternative.

After testing a range of different sounds, the team from Soongsil University in Seoul, South Korea, found that one resembling a duck’s quack would do the job perfectly.

Plus, it’s much more ‘pedestrian-friendly’ than loud, angry horns, they decided.

The scientists remodelled the classic klaxon ‘ah-oo-gah’ car horn introduced back in 1908, and created a noise sounding like a synthesised duck that can get people’s attention in a less stressful way. Lead researcher, Prof Myung-Jin Bae said: ‘In our study we used the existing historic klaxon sound source, but made some modifications concerning its volume and rhythm with duration time, by adding a power controller.

‘Our new klaxon sound can immediately alert pedestrians of the danger, while also reducing the unpleasantness and stress of the sound.’

Crucially, the quacking horn still does its job of alerting people to danger – but does so without being irritating.

A group of 100 test listeners evaluated different sounds for qualities, including stress and loudness, with the duck noise coming out on top.

Prof Bae said, the klaxon can make a loud noise with low power but its volume can’t be easily controlled. - 


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