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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

1
vote
1answer
605 views

How to prove equations for energy of a wave

In my textbook, it says that the energy (I) of a wave, determined by the power of a wave (P) divided by area (A), is determined by the following formula: $$I = \frac{1}{2}\rho v\omega^2A^2 = 2\pi^2 ...
3
votes
1answer
308 views

Wave pulse on a freely falling rope

Consider a rope hanging from the ceiling (massive / massless irrelevant, I suppose). A wave pulse is set up on the rope. Just as the wave pulse starts propagating on this rope, the top of the rope is ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Pressure in waves on a string

We know that when we speak sound waves are created. The air particles compress and rarefy and pressure is more at the nodes and less at anti-nodes. But can we say the same thing about waves on a ...
3
votes
1answer
240 views

Earthquake as a transverse wave

I have a very simple mental picture that earthquake waves travel like shear (transverse) waves through the earth. a. Does the speed of this wave give any valuable information about the mechanical ...
0
votes
2answers
757 views

Wavelength and resolution

I'm reading some texts that seam to assume knowledge of light that I'm not too familiar with. How does wavelength of light relate to the minimum distance span that can be observed (i.e. you cannot ...
1
vote
1answer
4k views

Science behind the singing wine glass

A wine glass filled with water (approximately half or a quarter), when you use a wet finger and rub the top of the wine glass, the wine glass will produce a sound. I heard that it is because of the ...
0
votes
1answer
283 views

Does a football stadium wave satisfy the wave equation?

This is the wave by fans. Does it satisfy the wave equation?
0
votes
1answer
268 views

Width of Gaussian Beam and Refractive Index

I know that in free space, the width of a Gaussian beam can be written as $W=W_0\sqrt{1+(\frac{z}{z_0})^{2}}$. However, I was wondering if it was possible to express this width as a function of ...
0
votes
1answer
277 views

Transmission of Gaussian Beam Through Graded-Index Slab

The $ABCD$ matrix of a glass graded-index slab with refractive index $n(y)=n_0(1-\frac{1}{2}\alpha^{2}y^{2})$ and length $d$ is $A=\cos(\alpha d)$, $B=\frac{1}{\alpha}\sin(\alpha d)$, $C=-\alpha ...
0
votes
4answers
130 views

Messing with the past: Endless loop, or alternate timelines? [closed]

Let's take the following scenario: A person finds a time machine. He uses it to travel to the past, and kills his grandparents. Now because of this, his parents are never born, they do not ...
2
votes
1answer
183 views

How can we test if something is a wave?

More specifically, I want to understand why a wave is a wave but a wave packet is not considered a wave (as discussed in this question). I would think that if something have these characteristics: 1. ...
2
votes
0answers
83 views

Can we compute the magnitude of the stress caused by sound waves on a wall?

As a follow up to this question, Could we really compute the magnitude of the stress caused by sound waves on a wall? If so, How do we do that?
2
votes
0answers
147 views

Help With Difficult Deductive Proof [closed]

Suppose we have a Gaussian beam with a complex envelope expressed by the following equation 1: $$\tag{1} A_G(x,y,z) = \frac{A_1}{q(z)} e^{-ik \frac{x^2 + y^2}{2q(z)}} $$ where $$ q(z) = z+iz_0 $$ ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Questions regarding standing waves

I have two questions regarding mechanical waves. 1) We know that standing waves are created when any wave traveling along the medium will reflect back when they reach the end. But in an open organ ...
0
votes
1answer
102 views

Percentage increase in the length of pendulum

I'm struggling with a physics question : What should be the percentage increase in the length of the chord of a pendulum for the period increased by 1%? The answer is 2%. I tried with $w = 2 \pi/T ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

Is this phase right?

Hello at physics lectures we wrote a phase of a sine wave like this: $$\phi = kx - \omega t$$ Is this right? As I recall the phase of a wave should be written like this: $$\phi = \omega t - kx$$ ...
1
vote
2answers
268 views

Pulsed Spherical Wave

Can somebody help show me how a pulsed spherical wave has a wavefunction of the form U(r,t) = (1/r)a(t-r/c), where a(t) is an arbitrary function, r is the radius of the spherical wave, t is time, and ...
5
votes
3answers
923 views

What is the mass of a wave?

The slide called "QUANTA" here says that "One Quantum has a definite mass" and the picture shows a wave. So, What is meant by the mass of a wave?
4
votes
3answers
7k views

Why can't light pass through walls but sound can?

When I sit in a room I can hear voices coming from the adjacent room but the light in adjacent room does not enter my room i.e. sound waves travels through the wall but light waves can't. Why?
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Waves travelling with water flow

Suppose I use a tool to create a circular wave in the river. If there are two fish swimming 1m from the source (2m from one another), they will both feel the wave at the same time. What will happen ...
0
votes
1answer
206 views

Wavefronts and phase velocity faster than $c$

Lets assume we have parallel wavefronts in a glass of water: and we put an inclined rod on the water surface: related to a very small inclining, Vy velocity is greater or much greater then Vx ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Group Velocity and Phase Velocity of Matter Wave?

In quantum mechanics, what is the difference between group velocity and phase velocity of matter wave? How can it also be that phase velocity of matter wave always exceeds the speed of light?
1
vote
0answers
57 views

What phenomenon is responsible for the evolution pattern of waves created by waterfalls?

I have been fascinated lately by the pattern of the waves created by a waterfall in my town. Specifically, the pattern shows a gradual decrease in the density of the waves as they travel away from ...
2
votes
3answers
11k views

Sinusoidal Wave Displacement Function

I am learning about waves (intro course) and as I was studying Wave Functions, I got a little confused. The book claims that the wave function of a sinusoidal wave moving in the $+x$ direction is ...
0
votes
0answers
345 views

Intensity of the diffraction pattern of the double slit

I am trying another approach for my last unanswered question. (Bounty still on for 3 days. Anyone? Please?) Note that this is not the same question but a greatly simplified version concerning a much ...
7
votes
3answers
664 views

Why does inverting a song have no influence?

I inverted the waveform of a given song and was wondering what will happen. The result is that it sounds the exact same way as before. I used Audacity and doublechecked if the wave-form really is ...
0
votes
3answers
445 views

Conservation of energy with Huygens-Fresnel principle

I am currently experimenting with Huygens-Fresnel principle. I am trying to simulate the propagation of a beam, emerging from an aperture slot of width w. I assume the slot to be long and therefore ...
1
vote
3answers
990 views

Direction of Propagation of Wave

I've always been a little uneasy with the notion of direction of wave propagation, for some reason. I guess it's always been defined 'intuitively' and I want to know the limits of the concept. To this ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

Can the equation $v=\lambda f$ be made true even for non sinusoidal waves?

The known relation between the speed of a propagating wave, the wave length of the wave, and its frequency is $$v=\lambda f$$ which is always true for any periodic sinusoidal waves. Now consider: ...
2
votes
2answers
207 views

Why is there a wave on the water surface when I put something in the water?

We've started doing waves in our physics class, but we're doing things very quickly and the teacher doesn't explain anything. And I don't understand why waves work. I was thinking that when I fill a ...
1
vote
0answers
147 views

Behavior of wave at boundary

Firstly, how is "density" of wave formulated as? Secondly, when wave, travelling in less density medium, meets with the boundary that has higher density medium next to, reflected parts of the wave ...
2
votes
2answers
440 views

Why is $\Delta x \Delta k \approx 1$ in any pulse?

In my physics textbook, it says that for any pulse, if $\Delta x$ becomes smaller, $\Delta k$ becomes larger where $k$ refers to $2\pi/\lambda$ and $x$ is x-axis displacement, as described by $\Delta ...
0
votes
2answers
343 views

Counting electromagnetic modes in a rectangular cavity and boundary conditions

The electric field in a cubical cavity of side length $L$ with perfectly conducting walls is $E_x = E_1 \cos(n_1 x \pi/L) \sin(n_2 y \pi/L) \sin(n_3 z \pi/L) \sin(\omega t)$ $E_y = E_2 \sin(n_1 x ...
1
vote
2answers
291 views

Simple PDE as a theory of everything?

For the sake of simplicity, I’d like to believe that there is one master non-linear partial differential equation governing physics. In particular, consider a Klein-Gordon form: $$ \frac{\partial^2 ...
2
votes
1answer
237 views

How can Hilbert spaces be used to study the harmonics of vibrating strings?

The overtones of a vibrating string. These are eigenfunctions of an associated Sturm–Liouville problem. The eigenvalues 1,1/2,1/3,… form the (musical) harmonic series. How can Hilbert spaces be ...
2
votes
0answers
96 views

After quantization of electron vibrations, do we need electrons anyway?

The title question is not ment in a general context, but one in which goes to the plasmon theory. In that case, how is are the statistics (boson vs. fermions) of plasmons determined? And is there an ...
2
votes
2answers
134 views

What is the history behind the factors of 3 in the classification of electromagnetic radiation?

What is the history behind the factors of 3 in the classification of electromagnetic radiation? See e.g. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radio_spectrum#By_frequency Is this (just) inherited from the ...
1
vote
2answers
96 views

What is difference between the miltary radar in 1940's from commercial antenna that is for the use of TV

What is difference between the miltary radar in 1940's from commercial antenna that is for the use of TV? I have read article from some of the WW2 history website that call the German radar the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How do mirrors work?

Apparently, light is just a certain wavelength, or "the visible spectrum" of electromagnetic waves. If I recall correctly, my physics teacher explained to me that electromagnetic waves are basically ...
1
vote
2answers
444 views

Standing wave and energy flux

Here is a problem I have been asked that I do not know the answer. Consider two ideal wave generators (it can be sound generator or whatever) separated by a distance L and facing each other. At t=0 ...
2
votes
2answers
324 views

A question on intereference experiment with water waves as given in the Feynman Lectures on Physics

I have a question related to the interference (thought)experiment with water waves given in the book Feynman Lectures on Physics Vol.3. When only one hole (hole 1) is open the measured wave intensity ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Why and how is sound produced when two objects hit each other?

When two objects collide and undergo a partially inelastic collision (so every one we experience in every-day life), they rebound to a certain degree, but kinetic energy is not conserved. Thus, the ...
9
votes
1answer
108 views

Wave Physics - can a dynamic waveform be constrained to a specific geometry by signal processing alone?

Suppose that you have a signal source, a set of point-transducers, and a handful of moderately powerful DSPs. Is it possible to construct an arrangement of the transducers such that the original ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How can sound waves propagate through air?

We know that the sound waves propagate through air, and it can't travel through vacuum. so the thing that help it doing that is the air's molecules pressure. So my question how can that happens? I ...
0
votes
1answer
363 views

How do we find the frequency of wave propagated along the x-axis?

I don't know how to solve question like this: A transverse wave is propagated in a string stretched along the x-axis. The equation of the wave, in SI units, is given by:y = 0.006 cos π(46t - 12x). ...
0
votes
2answers
214 views

Sound “exploding” in car's window at certain speed [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why, when one opens 1 car window, does that noise occur? My knowledge in this area is really out-of-dated and stopped somewhere like ten years ago. So I would like to ...
5
votes
3answers
413 views

Physics of a guitar

I understand that when you pluck a guitar string, then a bunch of harmonic frequencies are produced rather than just the frequency of the desired note. If this is true, why does C2 sound so different ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the best material and design for building a parabolic dish?

I'm currently using a homemade metallic spaghetti strainer with a wifi adapter inside it to increase my wifi adapter's signal reception, but would think that a different material, like the aluminum ...
4
votes
1answer
473 views

What's the optimal shape for a continuous Galilean Cannon?

A Galilean Cannon is a toy similar to the famous basketball-and-tennis-ball demonstration. You take a tennis ball, balance it on top a basketball, and drop them both. The tennis ball will bounce up to ...
4
votes
10answers
2k views

Why do we think of light as a wave?

I've read that light travels in a straight line and has a wavelength of 400nm to 700nm. But I don't understand why does it have a wavelength and what creates its wavelength? I agree with the concept ...