Waves are disturbances that propagate through 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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Patterns in laminar flow of tap water

This is a simple experiment that anyone can do at home. Open your tap so that the water maintains a laminar flow, and the cross section of flow is considerably thin. Place your finger 3-4 cm below the ...
2
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1answer
23 views

Is a rope wave a perfectly transverse wave?

When i create a disturbance in a rope.What is happening at the particle level.I imagine the particles and the forces on the particles like this: According to my model there should be some ...
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226 views

Physics of how the cochlea isolates frequencies along its length?

Can anyone explain the separation of frequencies along the basilar membrane of the cochlea please? (equations would be nice) I understand it being related to the resistance caused by fluid in the ...
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2answers
184 views

Uncertainty and wave-trains

My textbook and the following extract from feynman's lectures present the same idea regarding wavetrains and uncertainty in their wavelengths. Why is it that a wavetrain confined to some space has an ...
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3answers
47 views

Why is wave a function of volts?

I'm looking at a beginner's book on Fourier and waves, and the very first graph shows a periodic wave where the horizontal axis is time (msec) and the vertical axis is something noted as "MAG(V)" ...
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1answer
16 views

Wave interference on window film coating

"The windows in an office tower are coated with a film to minimize reflected light of wavelength 550 nm. If the glass has an index of refraction of 1.52 and the film coating has an index of refraction ...
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937 views

Will a violin string keep vibrating for a longer time in vacuum than in air?

Hitting a string of a violin or a guitar will cause that string to vibrate, but after short time the amplitude of the vibration will decay, consequently the produced sound will die out. I suppose ...
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40 views

Direct interaction theory [on hold]

I got to know about a kind of theory or formulation of EM which doesn't have the idea of fields in it. In that theory I guess field isn't that which mediates the force between two charged particles. ...
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2answers
65 views

What is the significance of angular frequency $\omega$ with regards to wave functions?

What is the physical significance of $\omega$ in a function like $$ f(x) = Asin(kx + \omega t) $$ The only place that I am familiar with angular frequency is when dealing with circular motion, but ...
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1answer
531 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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2answers
62 views

Are matter waves (de Broglie) classified as transverse or longitudinal? [duplicate]

We know that waves are of two types: transverse and longitudinal, and we have studied about de Broglie waves as well, so which one of them is it? Or we have other means to classify them?
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1answer
34 views

Fourier series for a wave on an infinite string?

From "Vibrations and Waves" by A.P. French I know that any wave on a string length $L$ can be represented by: $$y(x,t)=\Sigma^\infty_0 A_n \sin(\frac{n\pi x}{L})\cos(\omega_nt-\delta_n)$$ But can we ...
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5answers
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Producing photons with same frequency, different amplitude wave [duplicate]

I don't understand how two photons of the same frequency can have different amplitudes, neither how to produce them. I know that classically the square of the amplitude is proportional to the energy, ...
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0answers
18 views

Combining waves? [on hold]

Are these following comments on waves correct and if not please can you explain why they are not correct. (these comments refer to the standard wave equation: $$c^2 \frac{\partial^2 y}{\partial ...
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2answers
51 views

Singing for physicists: How to resonate by body cavities with my voice?

My body has various cavities, such as my throat, mouth, chest, and nose. This cavities have resonant frequencies. I also have a voice box, which creates sound. How do I create sounds at the resonant ...
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2answers
59 views

What makes waves propagate?

Why do electromagnetic waves propagate? I have searched a lot about EM waves, but I am still unable to understand what is driving them. Could you explain?
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1answer
40 views

What is slinky-approximation?

I was reading the derivation of wave-equation from Berkeley Physics - Waves by Frank S. Crawford Jr. Let $\Delta z$ be a small segment of a continuous string . At equilibrium, tension is $T_0$ at ...
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4answers
335 views

Surface waves on Dr. Miller's planet

In the movie 'Interstellar', the crew land on a water world orbiting a black hole. The gravity is greater than that of Earth and there are huge surface waves present in the ocean that they land in. ...
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1answer
22 views

Reflection of Sound wave (Pressure Wave)

I want to study about the phenomenon of reflection of pressure waves as in an open ended organ pipe. Please suggest a suitable resource? I know about the harmonics in a stretched string and I can use ...
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2answers
80 views

Explain how waves have momentum?

A question on a practice test I'm taking is as follows: By shaking one end of a stretched string, a single pulse is generated. The traveling pulse carries: A. mass B. energy C. momentum D. ...
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1answer
37 views

Question regarding charge and acceleration

From a stationary charge electrostatic fields arise. From a moving charge, magnetostatic fields arise. From an accelerating charge, EM waves arise. So i wonder -- what about a non-constantly ...
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1answer
31 views

Is it possible to “pull” sound waves using only an object?

Say, for instance, I am outside standing 20 feet away from a speaker. Is there an object I can put on my body that would allow me to feel the bass of the music more, without picking up the vibrations ...
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2answers
73 views

What is a full cycle in damped oscillation?

Maybe it seems a dumb question, but I can't understand what the cycle in a damped oscillation is? Let's take an example: In harmonic motion, one cycle is the smallest distinguishable part of wave ...
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2answers
61 views

Trouble understanding phase matching equation

consider a 2nd order non linear optical material, i.e. a material in which it holds that $ P = \epsilon_0 E + 2dE^2$. In the Born approximation, the non linear contribution to the polarization density ...
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1answer
33 views

Sound waves and chromism?

I am definitely not a physicist, but I have a question related to Physics so I thought I'd give it a try. Please excuse my ignorance. :) I am somewhat familiar with the changes in color caused by ...
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5answers
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Phase shift of 180 degrees on reflection from optically denser medium

Can anyone please provide an intuitive explanation of why phase shift of 180 degrees occurs in the Electric Field of a EM wave,when reflected from an optically denser medium? I tried searching for it ...
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0answers
40 views

The interaction between waves and particles according to their wavelength [duplicate]

Why do EM waves with a large wavelength like those in the red range (and radio waves) interact with particles less than those in the blue range? That is the reason why the sky is blue, is that right? ...
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2answers
56 views

Phase change on reflection only 0 and $\pi$ allowed

We know that when a wave on a string is reflected from a hard boundary, the phase change is $\pi$, and from a soft boundary, the change is 0. My question is: this two conditions (hard and soft ...
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0answers
15 views

Phase change by reflection [duplicate]

Let's consider a light ray falling on a cuboid made of glass at the angle $\alpha$. Then there will be a reflected ray $A$. The ray will also refract. Let the refracted ray be $B$. Ray $B$ will be ...
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1answer
28 views

In a noiseless environment, how accurate do today's transmitters send EM waves?

Suppose that there is no external noise in the environment. How accurate are today's TEM wave transmitters in such a case? So if we want to send $200\cos(1000\pi t)$, can transmitters send exactly ...
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0answers
20 views

How can we detect the property of matter by using mechanical waves or IR or any other way

First of all, I am in high school[to tell that I don't know much physics]. And the second thing is that, I am not sure whether this question is specifically related to physics. What I want to ...
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2answers
740 views

What should be the intuitive explanation of wave equation?

$$\dfrac {\partial^2 y}{{\partial x}^2} = \dfrac{1}{v^2} \dfrac{\partial^2 y}{{\partial t}^2}$$ is the wave equation in one dimension. But what should be the intuition behind it? That is, what meaning ...
3
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3answers
99 views

Why is there a negative sign in front of the optical wave?

In undergrad I lost (a lot) of marks in my optics class for writing: $$A(t) = \exp(i(\omega t + \phi))$$ Instead of: $$A(t) = \exp(i(-\omega t + \phi))$$ In a derivation where I must have needed ...
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1answer
39 views

How does energy get transfered from destructive interference point to constructive one?

If there are two pressure waves (like sound waves) that travel in opposite directions and have the same amplitude then destructive interference occurs: one wave will compress the air particle (here ...
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28 views

How fast does the force of pulling a straight rope propagate along the rope? [duplicate]

Is it instantaneous or does it somehow propagate like a wave along the particles of the rope ?
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7k views

What is the fringe separation in Young's double slit experiment?

In the double slit experiment, a pattern of dark and bright bands appears on the screen. Is the fringe separation the distance between two bright bands? Question: In a double slit experiment ...
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1answer
35 views

Interference and windows

The other day i was learning about interference patterns with the effect of a bubble making a rainbow on the surface. I learned that the reflections from both sides of the soap can interfere ...
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0answers
20 views

What have we built? A resonant loop antenna? Rhombic?

Some background, my partner and I have built an antenna we are supposed to characterize for an assignment, and compare it to physical predictions. However, we don't know what type of antenna we have ...
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1answer
78 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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0answers
16 views

Intrinsic Impedance Clarification

Can somebody explain to me what it means to have a complex intrinsic impedance? I realize that it happens in lossy media and know the formula but am looking for comprehensive insight
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1answer
3k views

Relationship between slit size and wavelength in diffraction

Almost in every book on physics we can find a statement like "diffraction gets stronger when the size of the slit is comparable to the wavelength". Let's say we have a wall in a bathtub with a slit in ...
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3answers
174 views

Question on open organ pipe

Although open organ pipe is open on both ends, how standing waves are produced in a open organ pipe. Can someone explain with more clarity ?
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2answers
114 views

Light wave crossing media and the relationship between speed, wavelength, and frequency

There are many threads on this topic (like this one) but one aspect about the equation $ v = \lambda\nu $ still confuses me. I have read that frequency does not change when light crosses into ...
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2answers
130 views

How does Huygens Principle explain interference?

How exactly does Huygens theory about the propagation of wavefronts account for interference?
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0answers
11 views

Can TEM waves have constant offsets - that is, mean of non-zero in context of Poynting's theorem?

Suppose the electromagnetic wave and the corresponding magnetic field wave are TEM waves. Can such waves have overall mean of non-zero? (so DC offset) If they do, what do they mean in context of ...
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3answers
241 views

How does one determine whether an object will make an EM wave refract in a qualitative way?

for example, i have a vague notion that the actual answer is that the permittivity and permisivity are different in each different material, so all waves refract at every boundary, but we only call it ...
2
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1answer
21 views

Maximum Penetration Depth for Ultrasound

How do you define the maximum penetration depth of an ultrasound? I'm assuming it means the depth at which the wave has attenuated to a certain small percentage of the original intensity of the ...
0
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1answer
79 views

Relationship between temperature and wavelength?

I am investigating the relationship between wavelength and temperature. As seen the figure below of Planks law What is the relationship between the lambda(max) and Temperature? or in simpler ...
0
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1answer
32 views

Do Sidebands mean the frequency of an AM radio wave is not constant?

I'm studying for A-level now..... I have read some other posts explaining how the sidebands generated after the carrier wave is modulated. So, if there is sideband frequency, the frequency isn't ...
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1answer
43 views

Understanding wave packets, in particular matter waves, dispersion and point particles

Here is what I have gathered so far: Particles like an electron (i.e. with rest mass) can be represented as matter waves (deBroglie). The matter wave of a particle can be modelled a wave packet. A ...