Raspberry Pi-powered Boom IoT sensor detects nuclear explosions, tornadoes, rockets

The Raspberry Boom senses low-frequency sound, logging and tracking the data for scientific research.

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  • The Raspberry Boom is a Raspberry Pi-powered atmospheric monitor that detects inaudible sounds related to man-made and natural disasters.
  • The Raspberry Boom can detect tornadoes, avalanches, meteors, nuclear explosions, sonic booms, and more.

Raspberry Boom, a new Raspberry Pi-powered sensor that detects sounds inaudible to humans, can pick up noises associated with tornadoes, avalanches, and even nuclear explosions, parent company OSOP announced in a Thursday press release.

Panama-based OSOP is known for its previous Raspberry Pi-based seismograph, the Raspberry Shake. The Raspberry Boom, which detects infrasound waves, can act as a companion device to the Shake, the release said.

Both products are targeted toward home tech enthusiasts and scientists for use in collecting and studying the monitored data. According to the release, "each device connects to one another on a live world map called Station View. Never before have so many interconnected infrasound devices been proposed publicly or privately. This would create the largest citizen science infrasound array on a world wide level."

SEE: Internet of Things policy (Tech Pro Research)

As noted by Liam Tung, of our sister site ZDNet, the Raspberry Shake can also share data to an EQ Viewer, which collects information on earthquakes.

The Raspberry Boom can detect sound frequencies lower than 20 Hz (all the way down to 0.05 Hz), which is typically regarded as the limit for human hearing, the release noted. This means the sensor can detect both man-made and natural disasters. It was initially inspired by the work of volcano expert Jeffrey Johnson, who had previously developed his own infrasonic detection system.

The sensor could help individuals and businesses stay safe from avalanches, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. And it can also detect sound from nuclear testing, gunshots, sonic booms, and rocket ignitions--for example, it was used to track sound from the SpaceX Falcon Heavy Launch.

In addition to providing interesting information for home enthusiasts, the creators also foresee a connected network of the Shake and Boom sensors providing even more contextual data.

The Raspberry Boom launched on Kickstarter and met its initial goal in a very short amount of time. Interested folks can get their hands on a Boom board and sensor for a $179 contribution.

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Image: OSOP