Speed of sound


The speed of sound varies with temperature.

In air the speed of sound is almost 1090 feet per second (331 m/sec), in water it is close to 4800 feet per second (1401 m/sec).

In water this speed translates to 3273 miles per hour.

This is an important number to us because when a pump cavitates, the bubbles collapse at the speed of sound in the medium they are located.

At 3000 mph (4800 kilometers per hour) there is a potential for moving water to do lots of damage.

Water hammer is another instance where we find liquid traveling at the speed of sound.