Library of Sounds

References are given to the papers from which I took the spectral details. ApJ = Astrophysical Journal, A&A = Astronomy and Astrophysics.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 License. You may freely use these sounds in any way you like, subject only to acknowledging me. I'm interested in how these sounds are used, so please let me know what you do with them.


Quasars are massive black holes, sitting in the middle of galaxies. They devour any passing objects, and as the objects are torn apart, radiation is emitted. Here is what this radiation sounds like. There are different sounds emitted from different regions.

Supernova Remnants

These are the expanding clouds of gas left behind when a massive star comes to the end of its life and explodes, producing a supernova.

Star Forming Regions

New-born stars emerge from within vast clouds of interstellar gas. As they do so, the can light up this gas, producinga so-called HII region.

Planetary Nebulae

When stars like our Sun run out of fuel and die, instead of exploding, they spew turn into planetary nebulae - glowing clouds of gas that was blown from their surfaces in their dying days, illuminated by light from the ember left in the middle (a white dwarf star).


The signals from stars sound more hissy: rather than emitting certain frequencies only, they emit power at a wide range of frequencies, which produces the hissing sound. Unless stated to the contrary, all the sounds are based on model stellar atmospheres from Kurucz (1992), IAU Symposium 149, p225. Sounds are in order of increasing temperature.