# Questions tagged [waves]

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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### Stationary Nodes with Waves containing a "Fourier series" of frequencies

For a standing wave (i.e. a wave pattern created from two oppositely-traveling waves with the same amplitude and frequency), stationary nodes are created at certain positions along the wave with ...
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### Can we get the discretization of $k$ due to boundary conditions by solving wave equation using Fourier transform?

I am interested in vibrations of a string in different modes with its two end fixed. But I want to use the method of Fourier transform rather than the method of separation of variables. Using the ...
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### Thin film interference equation confusion

For thin film interferences, why is that when you have two phase changes, the equations you use for constructive and destructive interferences are switched?
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### Is there a general equation for the signal velocity?

The phase velocity is defined as $v_{ph} = \frac{w}{k}$ and the group velocity as $v_{g} = \frac{\partial w}{\partial k}$. Both can exceed $c$ in some situations. The velocity than can't exceed $c$ is ...
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### Fresnel coeficients are for a single interface: 2 waves match 1 wave at the other side; are they valid for multilayers were 2 waves match 2 waves? why

Fresnel coeficients are deduced for a single interface where one imposes the continuity of 2 waves at one side with 1 wave at the other side. In multilayers, except at the exit medium, the continuity ...
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### Are the photons in a standing wave moving at $c$?

So, in a standing wave, two superimposed waves produce a wave that remains stationary, with its particles resonating back and forth, right? For instance, in a water wave, two waves moving in opposite ...
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### Relation between Frequency and Overtone in Circular Membrane

How does the frequency change along the radius of a circular membrane such as a snare drum (with respect to overtones). If I strike the drum in the center, I will get a frequency. Now how will this ...
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### How do water waves scale up as the size of a bathtub scales up?

If I fill a bathtub with water to the point that it is spilling out of the far end of the tub, the waves in the tub caused by the water coming into the basin stabilize at a given height -- roughly two ...
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### Poynting Vector Perpendicular to Surface

In Spherical coordinates if we have a source at the origin generating $E$ in the $\hat{r}$ direction and $H$ in the $\hat{\phi}$ direction then our Poynting Vector will be in the $\hat{\theta}$ ...
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### In electron-photon Compton scattering should the scattered photon form a 'radiation cone'?

If we imagine a photon as a little bit more wave than particle should it form a cone after being scattered from a let say point particle or what ever an electron could possibly be? As the electron has ...
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### What happens to vertical light in light diffraction experiments?

In single slit experiment, light tends to bunch up vertically the more it spreads out horizontally. Why does this happen?
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### In a string performing wave motion

In a string after the wave is generated, oscillation energy is transferred in the pulse due to workdone by tension. Now,for an electron being a wave what force transfers it's oscillation energy?
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### Why do only bass sounds (muscle cars and subwoofers) shake the environment?

I have read this question: The walls have their resonant frequencies and being large objects, these tend to be low frequencies. Therefore bass sound waves are better at triggering resonance in the ...
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### How is a sound wave sped up electronically?

Sound waves are recorded as waves electronically. What I am asking is how these waves are 'sped up'. For example on a sound software, when you get a sound wave and then speed it up (using some editing ...
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### Wave Interference, question on diagram

I'm trying to understand the wave behavior of light and have questions on diagrams of it. Wiki shows the following two diagrams from Christian Huygens describing the wave nature of light. I have ...
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### Longitudinal Wave in 3D - strain/stresses

If a longitudinal wave is passed through a 3D isotropic body, the following strain tensor results [Reference]: This describes the strain in the x-direction while the strains in the y-and z-directions ...
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### Can "solitons" be explained by linear wave equation? [duplicate]

In this Wikipedia page about the history of solitons, the author say that the observations made by Scott Russell "could not be explained by the existing water wave theories" at that time. ...
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### String vibration patterns

Sometimes when you pluck a string on a stringed instrument, the string turns into what looks like a nearly stationary loop with a semi-transparent middle. Sometimes, the loop doesn't appear stationary,...
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### Where does the body gets energy to vibrate in its natural frequency?

If a body is in vacuum and clamped at one point when disturbed slightly from its rest position , starts vibrating. It vibrates in its natural frequency and constant amplitude. So if we are disturbing ...
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### Can interference take place if the medium between the slits and screen is changed?

In Young's double-slit experiment, the medium between the slits and screen is usually air. But, if we replaced air with another medium, for example water, the wavelength of light would change and the ...
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### Why does rainwater form equidistant waves on an inclined road? [duplicate]

It was raining down on this hairpin road, while I took this image. There was some very interesting waves forming with more or less equal spacing between each other. Also, if you could walk along the ...
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### Trying to prove the wave equation from circle

Imagine one of the point in the wave. It is in oscillation. So its displacement can be written as $Y = A\sin(\theta)$ where $\theta= \omega t$. $$Y(t)=A\sin(\omega t) \tag{1}$$ Time for one wave ...
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### Can standing waves be formed from a medium with one free end?

I know that standing waves are normally formed in a confined medium where both ends are fixed. However, I wonder if standing waves can be formed in a medium with one fixed end and one free end since ...
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### Electromagnetic field potentials

Good afternoon for everyone. I have a question in attitude towards the electromagnetic potentials. There are two terms showing two forms of Maxwells equations for electrostatic potential and vector ...
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### Longitudinal wave propagation in 3D

When a longitudinal wave is sent through a body, there is a strain in the emitted direction (x). What about the three-dimensional body with the strains in the direction perpendicular to the emitting ...