Pipers call the tune

PHYSICISTS at Edinburgh University are working to improve the quality of mass-produced musical wind instruments to make British manufacturers more competitive.

Backed by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the Pounds 88,000 project will use a technique called acoustic pulse reflectometry to inject a sound pulse into an instrument and analyse echoes. This reveals the quality of sound produced and errors in the construction of brass and woodwind instruments.

Britain is a former world leader in instrument manufacture but had lost market share in recent years to Far Eastern firms.

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