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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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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54 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 ...
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1answer
29 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 ...
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35 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?
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50 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?
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3answers
87 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 ...
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1answer
51 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 ...
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2answers
57 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. ...
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1answer
32 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 ...
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2answers
28 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 ...
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32 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 ...
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1answer
55 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} ...
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36 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 $a=\frac{damping\space force}{2\cdot mass}$
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1answer
59 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 ...
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2answers
36 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 ...
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1answer
40 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 ...
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1answer
24 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 ...
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0answers
29 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 ...
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3answers
110 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 ...
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2answers
47 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.
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2answers
46 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 ...
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1answer
30 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 ...
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3answers
144 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 ...
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1answer
57 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) + ...
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1answer
45 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 ...
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1answer
92 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 ...
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1answer
52 views

How does Huygens Principle explain interference?

How exactly does Huygens theory about the propagation of wavefronts account for interference?
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1answer
32 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 ...
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30 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 ?
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1answer
94 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 ...
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1answer
27 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 ...
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1answer
25 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 ...
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0answers
43 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 ...
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3answers
67 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 ...
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3answers
45 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 ...
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1answer
47 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 ...
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0answers
24 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 ...
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2answers
87 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 ...
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1answer
78 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 ...
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2answers
52 views

Wave displacement with phase difference 180

The variation with distance x along a wave of its displacement d at a particular time. A second wave has the same frequency and speed as the wave shown in Fig. 2.1 but has double the intensity. The ...
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1answer
57 views

Speed of sound and Break the sound barrier

What happens when plane exceeds the speed of sound? and What is the interpretation of the conical shape that appears behind the plane?
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1answer
71 views

Diffraction to be explained without Huygens principle

Can we explain diffraction without using Huygens principle?
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36 views

Relation between size of obstacle, wavelength and diffraction

"If the boundary is merely an obstacle implanted within the medium, and if the dimensions of the obstacle are smaller than the wavelength of the wave, then there will be very noticeable diffraction of ...
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0answers
19 views

What equation can be used to solve an ideal string/membrane in a non-vacuum medium?

I'm interested in the eigenmodes of the membrane for various mediums, such as vacuum, air, water, etc., which impose a damping effect on the membrane. This cannot be done by merely changing the value ...
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0answers
30 views

Boundary conditions for enthalpy waves inside a pipe

So I'm trying to solve a form of the wave equation for sound produced by a vortex distribution $\vec{\omega}$ convecting at velocity $\vec{v}$ . $$\left(\frac{1}{c_0^2} \frac{\partial^2}{\partial ...
2
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2answers
133 views

Linear vs. quadratic dispersion relation

In wave mechanics the dispersion relation between frequency $\omega$ and wave number $k$ is linear: $$\omega_n=c k_n$$ But in quantum mechanics, based on Schrödinger's equation, one can show that we ...
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5answers
300 views

What happens to waves when they hit smaller apertures than their wavelenghts?

I was wondering this for quite a long time now. Let's say you have a water wave (like ripples, not the ones you see during tsunamis) with wavelength 10 m. Imagine you put a boundary with an opening of ...
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1answer
68 views

Sound Wave interference Experiment

I was wondering, can we use two sound sources so as to create a destructive interference at the position of a recorder at home? If possible, what is the easiest way?
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36 views

Frequency dependance of sound wave reflection

Why are high frequencies reflected more than low frequencies off an 'acoustically hard' surface such as concrete? I basically understand that the amount of reflection is determined by the impedance ...
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1answer
33 views

Meaning of ideal membrane

I'm studying from a mathematical point of view the bidimensional vibrating membrane. How can I define an ideal membrane? What are the assumptions when I say 'ideal'? Thanks!