A Staff Report from the Straight Dope Science Advisory Board

Is the sound of a whiplash caused by breaking the sound barrier?

December 10, 1997

Dear Straight Dope:

What is the sound a whip makes? I once heard it was the tip of the whip breaking the sound barrier.

SDStaff Dogster replies:

Yep. The noise is actually a mini-sonic boom as the tip of the whip breaks the sound barrier. Now behave, or you won't even hear it coming.

— Yer dog

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