We used a numerical simulation of TRAPPIST-1 to play a piano note every time a planet passes in front of the star (a 'transit') and a drum every time a faster inner planet overtakes its outer neighbour (a 'conjunction'). To assign pitches, we simply scaled up the orbital frequencies by 212 million times to bring them into the human hearing range. The TRAPPIST-1 system is a resonant chain which means that the periods of the planets' orbits are very close to whole number ratios (ex. 3:2, 4:3). This is exactly what makes two musical notes sound consonant when played together and as a result, TRAPPIST-1 creates a beautiful, but slightly twisted harmony. For the same reason, the transits and conjunctions occur in a steady, repeating pattern. The crackling sound heard towards the end is Kepler's K2 lightcurve data of the star's observed brightness sped up by many times.
For more information on how this was done watch https://youtu.be/7i8Urhbd6eI
read about us in the NYT https://www.nytimes.com/201...
and see system-sounds.com.
For more information on the TRAPPIST-1 system see trappist.one.
Created by Matt Russo, Dan Tamayo and Andrew Santaguida 2017.
Numerical simulation and animation performed with REBOUND (http://rebound.readthedocs....
Background image and star animation generated with Universe Sandbox ² (http://universesandbox.com
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike: Please credit system-sounds.com with all use.