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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Can random constructive interference with sound waves cause damage?

Any two sound waves have a random chance to constructively interfere with each other at a given spot and this will cause an increase or decrease in pressure. So is it possible that a large number of ...
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31 views

Can the motion of a cracking whip be described as the interference of two waves?

I was watching a whip crack in slow motion and I noticed that the motion of the whip could be described using two different circular descriptions. 1) the user circles the whip around over his head, ...
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1answer
68 views

Electric field generated by a point charge moving at the speed of light

As you see, this is the electric field generated by a point charge moving at constant speed v. I know that when $v$ -> 0, $E$ is just the Coloumb Law. But how do you interpret $E$ when $v$ -> $c$ ? ...
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96 views

Period of Double Slit Experiment

What is the period of the pattern from the double slit experiment? It varies along the pattern right? Namely I'm confused because when considering two point sources (See: Period of Interference ...
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4answers
6k views

Why is energy in a wave proportional to amplitude squared

I'm a mathematics student trying to grasp some basics about wave propagation. A sentence I find very often in introductive physics textbooks is the following: In a wave, energy is proportional to ...
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0answers
43 views

Intuitively proof that intensity of a wave is proportional to the square of its amplitude [duplicate]

Firstly I would like to know if this is valid for every kind of wave, or are there any conditions/exceptions where this is not valid. But the main question is, is it possible to prove this fact for a ...
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1answer
81 views

Why does a minor vertical vibration cause my coffee to spill?

When I walk my kid sometimes I put a cut of coffee in a cupholder attached to the stroller. When I push the stroller over a brick pavement it seems to vibrate vertically. That is enough for the coffee ...
2
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1answer
46 views

What can make signal triangulation tricky?

Usually, when you're trying to find a source of whatever signal, you move around the source and then calculate the position using triangulation. I'm specifically talking about low frequency signals, ...
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1answer
50 views

Choice of sign of exponential argument affecting tractability of wave reflection at a boundary

It is possible to show that functions of the form $f_{1}(kx-\omega t)$, $g_{1}(kx+\omega t)$, $f_{2}(\omega t-kx)$ and $g_{2}(\omega t+kx)$ are all solutions of the wave equation ...
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2answers
37 views

Sound Wave out of phase

I connected my speakers to my sound system switching the +ve and -ve one of the speakers I can notice them beating out of phase but how come I don't hear any difference and at what position will it ...
2
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2answers
44 views

Interpretation of dispersion relation

In my research, I found that my system has the following dissipation relation: $$\omega^2=k^2+k_0^2\ , $$ where $k_0^{-1}$ is an intrinsic lengthscale of the system and the units are chosen so that ...
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3answers
55 views

Unpolarized Light

Suppose I had a ray of unpolarized light, and I was sitting inside the beam and looking at the electric fields oscillating, then , if I am looking at a point how would the oscillations look like? I ...
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1answer
179 views

Relationship between the continuity equation and the wave equation

What exactly is the relationship between the continuity equation and the wave equation? Suppose $J^\mu$ is a contravariant vector that satisfies the continuity equation $\partial_\mu J^\mu=0$. Let ...
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4answers
546 views

Do Electromagnetic Waves really propagate through continuous Induction?

I've often seen it said that in an Electromagnetic Wave the changing Electric Field component creates the Magnetic Field Component and the changing Magnetic Field Component in turn creates an Electric ...
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1answer
39 views

Finding the speed of a standing wave from a graph?

I am supposed to find the wave speed of a standing wave from a graph of frequency vs linear density, and I'm not exactly sure how. Any help would be great, thanks.
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1answer
35 views

Total internal reflection and waveguides

I'm looking at a model of a planar dielectric waveguide along the lines of this picture: For the wave inside the $n_1$ dielectric slab to totally internally reflect $\theta_M$ needs to be smaller ...
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1answer
42 views

Resonant Frequency & Opera Singers [on hold]

Would it be possible under math of strings to note the frequency of each string vibrations? And in doing so, in hand with using the technique opera singers use to shatter glass with their voice, would ...
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1answer
18 views

Compute impulse response of a cavity for sound waves

Given a (closed or not) surface and a point emitting a spherical sound wave, how can I calculate the wave amplitude in any point of space, considering reflections on this surface ? The idea is to ...
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1answer
25 views

Wave frequencies and barrier width?

I know a fact that says a wave can go through barriers thinner than its length. This is why for example FM radio can be picked anywhere while antenna TV needs direct sight to the transmitter. Is this ...
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1answer
45 views

Heat diffusion: evanescent waves?

It has been recently pointed out to me that the solution of the heat equation in a semi-infinite material with an oscillating boundary condition at the surface is not an evanescent wave. The argument ...
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1answer
44 views

Standing sound wave in a wind instrument

So I've had this question bugging me ever since I saw sound at physics class: How is it possible to match the resonance frequency of a column of air in an organ pipe and form a standing sound wave by ...
183
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4answers
31k views

Can I compute the mass of a coin based on the sound of its fall?

Other day, I bumped my bookshelf and a coin fell down. This gave me an idea. Is it possible to compute the mass of a coin, based on the sound emitted when it falls? I think that there should be a ...
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2answers
169 views

Why doesn't the magnetic field polarize when polarizing light?

If the magnetic field doesn't polarize does it follow the electric field path of propagation? or does it vanish?
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2answers
47 views

Transmission of waves

How do you know if a wave will transmit when it hits a media boundary? Will a portion of the wave always be transmitted when a wave hits a media boundary? My textbook says part of the wave will be ...
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1answer
148 views

Dispersion relation for TE and TM waves in general anisotropic medium

I want to calculate the dispersion relation (the relation between $\bf k$ and permittivity and permeability tensors and $\omega$) for a TE and a TM wave with wave vector $\mathbf k=k_x\mathbf {\hat ...
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8answers
1k views

Why does wavelength affect diffraction?

I have seen many questions of this type but I could nowhere find the answer to "why". I know this is a phenomenon which has been seen and discovered and we know it happens and how it happens. But my ...
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4answers
6k views

Why do bass tones travel through walls?

I was in the shower while my roommate was listening to music and got to thinking about the fact that I could only hear the bass and lower drums through the walls. Why is this? The two possibilities I ...
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3answers
2k views

Why is it necessary for an object to have a bigger size than the wavelength of light in order for us to see it?

I keep hearing this rule that an object must have a bigger size than the wavelength of light in order for us to see it, and though I don't have any professional relationship with physics, I want to ...
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0answers
25 views

How is the imaginary part of angular frequency omega related to the imaginary part of the refractive index?

I'm trying to find the attenuation constant (leak rate) $\alpha$ from the imaginary part of the refractive index of a lossy material. I have the eigen frequency $\omega$ for my structure which has an ...
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2answers
4k views

Frequency of the sound when blowing in a bottle

I'm sure you have tried sometime to make a sound by blowing in an empty bottle. Of course, the tone/frequency of the sound modifies if the bottle changes its shape, volume, etc. I am interested in ...
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1answer
18 views

Superimposed state vs. zero amplitude state

Two equal amplitude wave pulses approaching each other through some medium such as a string may form a region of zero amplitude when they overlap completely. At this point, the location of overlap is ...
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1answer
75 views

Wave Packet in Curved Spacetime

It is known that the classical equation of motion for a scalar field wave packet on a curved spacetime background gives the geodesic trajectory (the e.o.m. is $(\nabla_\mu \nabla^\mu + m^2) \Phi=0$). ...
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1answer
31 views

What length should be the gap to block UV waves from the Sun?

The origin of the question is practical, but the theoretical part is interesting too. Let's rest a little bit on the roof on a sunny summer day. We don't want to get burned, so we usually place some ...
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0answers
60 views

How do we define a sound source?

How do we define a source of sound? Purely mathematically a sound source is a term $q$ \begin{equation} \frac{1}{c_0^2}\frac{\partial^2p'}{\partial t^2}- \nabla^2p' = q \end{equation} such that we ...
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1answer
49 views

Compression vs Rarefaction in Sound Waves

I am currently looking into solutions for Sound Classification, and I came across Ludvigsen's methodology (if anyone wishes to refer to it). The problem is that a sample graph of amplitudes in one of ...
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1answer
80 views

Plane wave complex notation

As far as I know, the function: $$ \vec{E}(\vec{r},t)=\vec{E_0}\cdot e^{i(\vec{k}\cdot \vec{r}-\omega t)} \hspace{2cm}(1) $$ is a mathematical solution of the wave equation: $$ \nabla^2 ...
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4answers
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Waves in water always circular

I have had a question since childhood. Why do we always get circular waves (ripples) in water even when we throw irregularly shaped object in it?
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1answer
23 views

Nuclear explosion wavelength data

I am looking for data source (or chart) of spectral data that is being emitted on detonation of nuclear or thermonuclear explosion. Reason I am looking is to see if this data has specific signature ...
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1answer
312 views

Deriving the group velocity of a wave produced by some basic cosine waves with unequal amplitudes

Consider some basic cosine waves of the form ${E_i} = {E_0}\cos ({\omega _i}t - {k_i}z)$ with different amplitudes, frequencies and phases. We know a combination of such waves could result in a wave ...
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1answer
37 views

Would half of electromagnetic wave be absorbed on first sensor?

If I would set up electromagnetic emitter that would emit one wave, but while it would be emitting it I would spin emitter 180 degrees at such speed that one half of wave would be emitted in that time ...
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1answer
67 views

How can such a wave exist at the surface of the sun?

Recently, I came across the following picture from NASA's SOHO observatory: It seems evident that this is a transverse wave (mind the ring which is bright and dark). But how can this be the case ...
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1answer
194 views

Why do waves occur?

I've seen a couple derivations of wave equations, but I was never convinced that waves would actually exist. Consider a spring with a compression pulse in a part of it (that is, assume it has an ...
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2answers
122 views

What is the theoretical/intutive meaning of $x(t) = x_0 \cos ( \omega t + f )$?

What is the meaning of $x(t)=x_0 \cos(\omega t+f)$, where $x_0$ is the amplitude, $\omega$ the angular frequency, $t$ time and $f$ the phase constant? I know how to solve the mathematical problems ...
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1answer
36 views

Why would a screen(with touch controls) in a vibrating environment be readable if its refresh rate is dynamically matched with vibrations?

So, I was reading about this Dragon V2 and it has got touch controlled screens, but screen might be unreadable for pilots because of engine vibrations and whatnot. I came across this comment on ...
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1answer
33 views

Time dependency of the phase of a single photon

I am wondering if a wave packet of a single photon in the time domaine $$ \psi(t)=|\psi(t)|\; \text e^{\text i \varphi(t)} $$ can have a different $t$ dependence in phase than the simple phase ...
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1answer
54 views

Questions related to resonance/standing-waves and sound

I understand resonance for a simple harmonic oscillator but not for more complex systems like standing waves. How can I be in resonance with the normal mode in an organ pipe? I understand that the ...
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2answers
53 views

Need help visualising transverse waves

From studying waves I find that I can visualise longitudinal waves where the wave propagates in the direction of the displacement. However I don't understand what causes the propagation perpendicular ...
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3answers
167 views

How could electromagnetic waves propagate through space although they have no electrons?

How could electric fields in these waves propagate through space although in space there's no electrons for the electric field to be formed? is there another type of charged particles that carry the ...
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1answer
60 views

Power of Shockwaves

My question is about shockwaves and their power when they are created/how do they lose their power? Let's say that we have ground 0 with 10 grams of TATP on it. The detonation velocity of TATP is ...
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1answer
41 views

(air pressure and displacement) Isn't this image wrong?

Isn't this figure wrong? P(x,t) = -B(dy/dx) . If the derivative of air displacement has a maximum, then this is where the pressure is minimum, not maximum as this figure suggests. Could someone ...