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They say silence is golden – but is it possible that too much silence is not such a good thing? There’s a room in the United States that’s so quiet it becomes unbearable after a short time. The longest anyone has survived in the ‘anechoic chamber’ at Orfield Laboratories in South Minneapolis is just 45 minutes.

It’s 99.99 % sound absorbent and holds the Guinness World Record for the world’s quietest place, but if you stay in there too long and you may start hallucinating.

It has 3.3 foot-thick fiberglass acoustic wedges, double walls of insulated steel and 1 foot-thick concrete.

The company’s founder and president, Steven Orfield said ~ ‘We challenge people to sit in the chamber in the dark for 45 minutes. When it’s quiet, ears will adapt. The quieter the room, the more things you hear. You’ll hear your heart beating, sometimes you can hear your lungs, hear your stomach gurgling loudly. In the anechoic chamber, you become the sound.’

And this is a very disorientating experience. Mr. Orfield explained it’s so disconcerting that sitting down is a must. The chamber is used by a number of manufacturers, which test how loud their products are. That’s pretty interesting.

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