Nowadays, we depend on modern technology for live communication, but way back in Medieval Era, Indians had mastered the art of live communication within a range of few kilometers, that too without the support of any electronic equipment. India was one of the leading countries to use acoustics or sound based systems, which is an interdisciplinary science that deals with the study of all mechanical waves in gases, liquids, and solids, including vibration, sound, ultrasound, and infrasound.

You will be amazed to know that Hyderabad, where the ‘HITEC City’ is located, has glorious scientific past as well. Golconda Fort, built by Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah in 1525 on the Western outskirts of Hyderabad city, is not only an optimization of the opulent ‘Nawabi culture’ of the time but also a premium metaphor of the science.

Though, the fort looks like any other fort built during the Medieval Era, it is devised on scientific style. The magnificent architecture of the fort is a manifestation of acoustic system. Entire building structures were built to support the acoustic arrangement. Every structure- main gates, king palace, public assemblies, and the court is placed in an order that the sound travels clearly. Also, the outer surface is so solid that it can reflect the sound waves without diluting their velocity.

Amazingly, the king was able to hear even a whisper in his court from his bedroom (main palace). In the absence of proper maintenance, the grandeur buildings are decaying but its acoustic/sound system is yet working.       

Why the acoustic system was needed?
In the 16th century, Golconda was the capital of the Qutb Shahi kingdom and the center of flourishing diamond trade. The world's most famous gems, including the Koh-i-Noor, the Hope Diamond, and the Nassak Diamond belong to Golconda. So, to ensure foolproof security, Kings of Qutb Shahi dynasty built the citadel on a granite hill that is 120 meters (400 ft) high with acoustic sound system. All main gates were acoustically synchronized in a defence communication system. In case of an enemy attack the gatemen would alert others through acoustic sound system.

Written by Raju Kumar/JPN

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