Tagged Questions

Waves are disturbances that propagate throush space and time. Classically, they travelled through a medium, disturbing the particles but not changing their mean position. Electromagnetic waves/particle-waves need no medium; they are disturbances in their respective fields.

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10
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1answer
184 views

What do we see while watching light? Waves or particles?

Im trying to understand quantum physics. I'm pretty much familiar with it but I can't decide what counts observing to cause particle behave (at least when it's about lights). So the question is what ...
2
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4answers
105 views

Why Light isn't like an Acoustic wave?

I just wanted to know why light isn't an Acoustic wave.Is it because light wave doesn't obey acoustic properties?
2
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2answers
68 views

A question over the reality of $\sin x$

Harmonic functions are in widespread use in physical descriptions of natural real phenomena. I am just wondering therefore how we can define $\sin(x)$ to be part of a real physical quantity (with ...
1
vote
1answer
33 views

Abstract concept of wave propagating on a string

I'm a real beginner in physics with a really basic doubt about waves. Suppose i have a string ( perfect elastic material ) whose left-end i can manipulate ( i can change its heigth ) and whose ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

Diffraction and $k$-space

Regarding diffraction I am a little bit lost reading about reciprocal space and the space of $k$'s. As I understand it the Fourier relationship between a wavepacket $\Psi(\vec r,t)$ and the complex ...
0
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1answer
32 views

What is the movement of the material point? [on hold]

The parametric formulas for movement of a material point are: $x(t) = A \sin (kt)$ $y(t) = B(1 - \sin(kt))$ Describe the movement of the MP. That is the entire question and I can't find a ...
0
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3answers
92 views

If a tree falls in the forest

The question of whether or not a tree that falls in the forest makes a sound - if there is nothing or no one around to hear it - comes up frequently at my house. So, my question is: is there any way ...
3
votes
3answers
98 views

A misunderstanding regarding infinite square well

Here is a picture of the energy states of infinite potential well. We can see That the first level have a half wavelength which fittes with a full wave of the second level. $$\frac{ \lambda _{1} ...
2
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3answers
37 views

Why inversion of wave for rope fixed at one end?

Setup: A rope is fixed at one end to a wall. You swing the other end up and down once. A wave starts travelling. It moves, hits the wall, then flattens, then is created again underneath (inversed), ...
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0answers
25 views

Why can the Poynting vecoter be written as $c^2\epsilon_0 \vec{E}\times \vec{B}$? [on hold]

Given that the usual writing is $\vec{E}\times \vec{B/\mu_0}$ ...
0
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1answer
17 views

Two layers of glass reflection related to wave interference [closed]

A highly reflective mirror can be made for a particular wavelength at normal incidence by using two thin layers of transparent materials of indices of refraction $n1$ and $n2 (1 < n1<n2 ) $on ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

Water wave packet variance

Consider the following quantity, $$I = \int x^2|\eta(x)|^2 \ dx,$$. For $\eta(x)$ a solution to some linear equation, we have $\eta(x) = \int a(k) e^{ikx} \ dk$ where, for $\eta$ to be real, we ...
0
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2answers
27 views

Is there a (cheap) optical resonance demonstration using visible light?

I'm looking for a impressive, inexpensive lecture demonstration of optical standing wave resonance. Preferably visible light. Can anyone suggest such a demo?
1
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0answers
21 views

Wave Energy Flux Demonstration [closed]

I found this exercise in a old sheet about a wave demonstration. Can someone help me with this? Note: This is not homework. Two ropes, with tension $T$ and mass densities $\sigma_1$ and $\sigma_2$ ...
1
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0answers
43 views

Phase and group velocity of a soliton? [closed]

How do I find the phase velocity and group velocity of a soliton with a $\operatorname{sech}$ (hyperbolic secant) envelope?
1
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3answers
72 views

Isn't all light polarised?

I apologize if my question does not make sense.(I'm teaching myself microscopy.) So reading Fundamentals of Light Microscopy and electronic imaging by Douglas&Murphy, at one point the author ...
0
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1answer
43 views

Definition of “destructive” interference of waves

What is the commonly accepted precise definition of "destructive" interference of waves. Does it mean: interference with complete cancellation or interference where the amplitude gets smaller ...
1
vote
2answers
50 views

Importance of the $\exp (i \bar{k} \cdot \bar{r})$ part of the plane wave equation

I am having trouble grasping how the equation $\bar{E} \left( \bar{r}, t \right) = \bar{E}_{0} \exp \left[ i \left( \bar{k} \cdot \bar{r} - \omega t \right) \right]$ fully describes a plane wave. ...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

How do traffic waves travel downstream?

How do traffic waves travel downstream (traveling in the same direction as the flow of traffic)? i.e. How can the flow of traffic in a particular location be affected by the flow of traffic behind ...
1
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2answers
22 views

Drawing phasor diagrams when $x$ is the sum of two cosine terms

If $$x= A\cos(w t) + A\cos(W t),$$ how do I draw a phasor diagram when $t=2$? Do I treat each cosine term as a vector, and then do vector addition? I know I have to differentiate to get the ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

polarization of a transverse wave travelling in ionosphere with polarization direction perpendicular to earths magnetic field

Assume a transverse electromagnetic wave entering ionosphere such that its Electric field of wave is perpendicular to earths magnetic field. Now, i read that as it will enter plasma, the wave will ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

General solution to the wave equation of electromagnetic field

Suppose that we have the four-vector potential of the electromagnetic field, $$A^i$$ The wave equation is given by $$\Box A^i=\frac {\partial^2}{\partial x^k \partial x_k } A^i= \left(\frac {1}{c^2} ...
0
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0answers
16 views

Amplitude resonance

Why does amplitude resonance occur at a frequency lower than the natural frequency of a body? specifically, why is $w=\sqrt{w_0^2-2a^2}$ where $a=\frac{damping\space force}{2\cdot mass}$
1
vote
1answer
57 views

How does a non-diffracting beam form from a converging ring of illumination?

I am trying to intuitively understand the basics of the supplementary text of a recent publication from Eric Betzig's group on lattice light sheet microscopy (1). I am confused by the explanation of ...
1
vote
2answers
33 views

What is the phase shift incurred by a sound wave as a result of reflection?

While studying waves I read the fact that a sound wave gets shifted by $\pi$ as a result of reflection against a surface. But I am unable to prove that fact. Assuming the interface to be a node I can ...
3
votes
1answer
35 views

How to create a barrier for sound waves?

Is there a way to create a barrier so that sound waves cannot pass through? Does laser light have this ability to act as a barrier or bounce sound waves back? This came to my mind when I was ...
0
votes
1answer
19 views

What influences the intensity of a wave? Frequency vs Amplitude

So, in school, I have been taught that $I$ is proportional to $A^2$. However, when I look at the equation $E = h\cdot f$, I see the frequency has an impact too on the intensity! Now, if a sound wave ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

Electric Field Inside Dielectric Filled Cavity

I want to determine the electric and magnetic fields inside the following cavity: perfect conducting walls at $z = 0, z=d, x=0, x=b, y=t, -t^\prime$, with a dielectric $\epsilon$ filling ...
-1
votes
1answer
69 views

Refraction of light beam water to air

Because of light's refraction, the arris of the bottom of a swimming pool (which, by the observer's point of view appears exactly aligned with the adiacent border), seems less deep than it actually ...
0
votes
2answers
89 views

Would this Produce Thrust? (Photon Momentum, Speed of a Pressure Wave)

This thought occurred to me after I began reading about the EM drive, and I know there are a lot of theories out there on how that works/doesn't work, I'm wondering why this solution wouldn't make ...
1
vote
2answers
36 views

Symbol in energy formula vs amplitude

Can someone tell me what does the symbol mean in the formula for energy compared to amplitude? Looks like a partial infinity sign, almost like a fish symbol.
0
votes
2answers
30 views

Polarisation definition

What is more correct and what is the difference? Polarised waves are waves with vibrations in one direction perpendicular to energy propagation "vibrations in one plane" "vibrations in one direction ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

Tranverse electromagnetic waves

TEM waves do not exist in waveguide. Is this the correct explanation- Both curl and divergence of TEM are zero inside the waveguide and because of the boundary conditions (electric field zero at every ...
0
votes
3answers
73 views

Why frequency is inversely proportional to time-period?

Why frequency is inversely proportional to time-period? While studying about Fourier transform that shows frequency representation. A doubt that came to me was a set of signal with same wavelength ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Path Difference Due to Angled Incident Light

If light incident on a diffraction grating makes an angle $\alpha$ with respect to the normal to the grating, show how $$m \lambda = d\sin\theta$$ becomes $$m\lambda = d[\sin(\theta - \alpha) + ...
0
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1answer
21 views

Radio wave propagation in ionosphere

Radio communication is based on the concept that a radio signal incident on the ionosphere is reflected if the frequency of the wave matches the plasma frequency. But what exactly happens? Is it ...
12
votes
1answer
87 views

Why does water appear still near the shore

Often when there's a light wind I notice this behaviour on lakes that there appears to be a very distinct line between the water with waves and the calm water. I don't know how well it comes through ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

How does Huygens Principle explain interference?

How exactly does Huygens theory about the propagation of wavefronts account for interference?
0
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1answer
29 views

What does it mean by coherence between waves?

I know by definition, coherence is pair of waves that have constant phase difference. What does this mean? Does it mean they are always have a 360 degrees, or 0 degrees phase difference? Or could they ...
0
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0answers
27 views

How can Young's double slit experiment explain the wave nature of light?

I've been reading about wave theory of light and the famous experiment performed by Thomas Young. But how does this experiment prove that light is a wave ?
0
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1answer
82 views

What is matter made of in the light of Quantum Mechanics? [closed]

I've always wondered what matter (particles, force particles, etc.) was actually made of considering the fact that quantum mechanics has shown us that particles can actually act as a probabilistic ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Does the equation for a wave passing through two slits apply for particles as waves?

The standard equation for a wave travelling through a double-slit apparatus is $w=\dfrac{z\lambda}{d}$, where $w$ is the fringe spacing at the detector screen on the other side of the slits, $z$ is ...
0
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1answer
23 views

Direction of the particle's motion

^ y | | |--------------> x Above I have labelled the axes of the graph. In the figure we can see that the direction of the particles motion is downward ...
2
votes
0answers
37 views

Fluctuation Dissipation Theorem [closed]

I take this course at university called Waves and Optics, and a few lectures ago our teacher talked about the Fluctuation Dissipation theorem but I didn't really understand it. The math behind it is a ...
2
votes
2answers
51 views

Negative frequency contributions for very short pulses?

I am wondering if very short optical light pulses can have a Gaussian envelope? When I describe the pulse shape with a Gaussian than the frequency distribution has also a Gaussian shape. But if the ...
0
votes
3answers
43 views

Derviation of group velocity

I am working thru a derivation of the group velocity formula and I get to this stage: $$y=2A\cos(x\frac{\Delta K}{2} -t\frac{\Delta \omega}{2})\sin( \bar k x-\bar \omega t)$$ Then all the derivations ...
1
vote
1answer
40 views

Wavefront sensor specifications Shack-Hartmann

Why is the dynamic range of Shack-Hartmann wave-front sensors (As seen in the first image below) quoted in wavelengths and not in angles? I thought that one of the most important aspects of the ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

Direction of particle's vibration.

I have seen a question related to the the direction of the vibration when a wave moves. I see there two opposite picture that represents contradictory notion of getting the accurate direction of the ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Electric and Magnetic field's phase difference shift in linearly polarized electromagnetic waves

I am a high school student and we currently studying the electromagnetic theory. In my textbook i read that the oscillating electric the magnetic fields have phase difference equal to π/2 rad near the ...
1
vote
1answer
64 views

Is it possible to use “negative sound waves” to “cancel out” a sound to create silence?

I saw youtube videos that claimed to do this, although I'm quite certain the videos just excluded sound and lied. However, I am wondering if the physics of this is actually possible - to create a ...