This Strange Room in Minnesota Is The Quietest Place on Earth
It's a small room in an unassuming building in Minnesota but no other place on earth is as quiet as it is.
Living here in the North Star State, we're used to hearing sounds like a loon call. (It IS our state bird, after all.) Or maybe the crack of a bat at Target Field, or the distinctive gjallarhorn leading the Skol chant during a Vikings game at US Bank Stadium.
But in this room in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, you won't hear any of those sounds. In fact, you won't hear any sounds at all. Because it is, quite literally, the quietest place ever measured on Earth.
This magical room of which we speak is officially known as the Orfield Anechoic Chamber at Orfield Laboratories, Incorporated, which is located on East 25th Street in Minneapolis. Their lab is 'the world’s only independent, multi-sensory design research and consulting lab,' which also specializes in architecture and product development, their website says.
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An 'anechoic chamber,' Orfield Labs says, is technically defined as 'a room with absolute sound absorption.' It's a special room insulated from exterior sources of noise and designed to completely absorb reflections of sounds inside.
According to ABC News, Orfield Labs' chamber has six sides and is built on I-beams and springs in a pit. The next layer is a five-sided over-chamber built over the top of the inner chamber, and finally, there is a 12-inch concrete building that was built over the entire structure.
It's not just Orfield who claims their anechoic chamber is the quietest place on earth, mind you, it's a record that was verified by the Guinness World Records in 2004 and 2005 and again in 2012. Orfield Labs says some people have called the chamber 'deafeningly silent,' while noting that because it's also completely dark inside, it can seem claustrophobic and disorienting to some who step inside after the chamber door is closed.
You can check out more about this strange place here in the Bold North in the video below. And keep scrolling to find out more about some familiar sounds here in Minnesota too.