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How do temperature changes affect a tuning fork's frequency?Featured science projectScience project video


This experiment was conducted to find out how the resonant frequency generated by a tuning fork will change at different temperatures.


The frequency of sound from a tuning fork will decrease as the temperature increases.

Scientific Terms

Compress, expand, frequency, tone, Young’s modulus, density, radius


Tuning Fork

A tuning fork consists of 2 tines shaped like a ‘U’ and a handle in the middle. When the tines are hit with an object or knocked on the table, they will vibrate. The vibration of the tines will cause the surrounding air to compress and expand creating sound.

The sound generated by the tuning fork is of a specific frequency or tone. This is why the tuning fork is very useful in tuning  musical instruments.

The frequency generated by the tuning fork will depend on the material it is made of and also its dimensions.       

frequency response of a tuning fork

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Complexity level:
Project cost ($):
Time required:
1 day to prepare, 1 day for observation
Material availability:
Easily found. Tuning forks may be purchased from musical instrument retailer shops.
Safety concerns: