Hearing Secrets

| | The Cochlea, Courtesy Sickkids.ca| Scientists at Vanderbilt University have found an explanation for the groovy spiral shape of … Continued

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| | The Cochlea, Courtesy Sickkids.ca|

Scientists at Vanderbilt University have found an explanation for the groovy spiral shape of the cochlea, the weird, seashell-looking component of your inner ear. Applied mathematician Daphne Manoussaki and her colleagues discovered that the spiral—which is filled with fluid and has two channels, separated by a membrane—helps to increase the ears’ sensitivity to low-frequency noise, sometimes by up to 20 decibels. —Martha Harbison
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