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World's Quietest Room, Anechoic Chamber In Minneapolis, Absorbs Sound

Posted: 04/ 4/2012 3:36 pm Updated: 04/ 4/2012 7:15 pm

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Looking for some serious peace and quiet? Well, you'll have to head to Minnesota.

Orfield Laboratories in South Minneapolis is home to the Anechoic Chamber, also known as the world's quietest room -- a title confirmed by Guinness World Records.

But while the room promises to provide complete silence, it can't guarantee visitors will be at peace once inside.

The quiet chamber amplifies even the slightest noise, making people accurately aware of anything, including the sound of their heart beating. In fact, the sensation is so intense -- including the possibility of hallucinations -- that no one has been able to stay in the room longer than 45 minutes, according to the Deccan Chronicle.

The room, which is used for testing devices such as hearing aids, measures at an eerily quiet -9 decibels. To put that number in perspective, a typical quiet room where most people sleep measures 30 decibels, according to Minnesota Public Radio.

In the chamber, sound is absorbed instead of bounced off the walls, Minnesota Public Radio explains.

Clients make their way to Orfield Labs to analyze the noises emitted from products, such as dishwashers or vacuums. As Twin Cities Business magazine observes, "Do they sound powerful, efficient, and expensive, or weak, ineffectual, and cheap? Do they 'sound' like a smart purchase?"

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Filed by Ileana Llorens  |