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Lecture 38 - Review of waves

Lecture 38 - Review of waves - What is a wave A wave is a...

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1 Lecture 38 Review of waves What is a wave ? Examples: Sound waves (air moves back & forth) A wave is a traveling disturbance that transports energy but not matter. Stadium waves (people move up & down) Water waves (water moves up & down) Light waves (what moves??) Waves exist as excitations of a (more or less) elastic medium. Amplitude: The maximum displacement A of a point on the wave. Period: The time T for a point on the wave to undergo one complete oscillation. A few parameters 1 f T Frequency: Number of oscillations f for a point on the wave in one unit of time Amplitude A A x y the wave in one unit of time. Angular frequency: radians ω for a point on the wave in one unit of time. 2 f y Wavelength: The distance λ between identical points on the wave. Connecting all these simple harmonic motions k 2 Wave number k : x Speed : The wave moves one wavelength λ in one period T , so its speed is v T f k λ
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2 Interference, superposition Q: What happens when two waves collide? A: They ADD together!
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