A theoretical study of special acoustic effects caused by the staircase of the El Castillo pyramid at the Maya ruins of Chichen-Itza in Mexico.

  title={A theoretical study of special acoustic effects caused by the staircase of the El Castillo pyramid at the Maya ruins of Chichen-Itza in Mexico.},
  author={Nico F. Declercq and Joris Degrieck and Rudy Briers and Oswald Leroy},
  journal={The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America},
  volume={116 6},
It is known that a handclap in front of the stairs of the great pyramid of Chichen Itza produces a chirp echo which sounds more or less like the sound of a Quetzal bird. The present work describes precise diffraction simulations and attempts to answer the critical question what physical effects cause the formation of the chirp echo. Comparison is made with experimental results obtained from David Lubman. Numerical simulations show that the echo shows a strong dependence on the kind of incident… 
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Repetition Pitch glide from the step pyramid at Chichen Itza.
  • F. Bilsen
  • Physics
    The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
  • 2006
Considering the echo as a sequence of reflections, and given the dimensions of the pyramid and source-receiver position, the chirp is predicted correctly as a Repetition Pitch glide of which the pitch height is continuously decreasing within 177 ms from 796 to 471 Hz-equivalent.
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