48_vel_boundaries

48_vel_boundaries - Lesson 48: Wave Velocity and Boundaries...

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Wave Velocity The speed of a wave does not depend on the amplitude or wavelength of the wave. Instead, the speed of the wave is determined by the properties of the medium it is traveling in. Some examples of how the properties of the medium can affect the speed of the wave are: 1. Speed of water waves depend on the depth of the water. 2. Speed of waves in a rope depend on the force exerted on the rope and the weight of rope used. 3. Speed of sound in air depends on the temperature of the air. A wave with a bigger amplitude does transfer more energy, but it will still travel at the same speed as a smaller amplitude wave in that same medium. Basic Wave Velocity If we look at the creation of a single wave pulse, we can determine the velocity of the wave. Let's say you are creating a transverse wave pulse in a skipping rope by flicking the end of it with your hand. The instant you start to flick your hand upwards, the pulse starts to travel away from you through the rope. You will continue to raise your hand until it gets to the highest point (this will be the amplitude of the wave), and then your hand starts to come back down. By the time your hand gets back to where it started (the equilibrium point), the wave pulse has traveled a certain displacement that is actually the length of the wave pulse. Since it traveled this certain length in a certain time, we can determine the velocity of the pulse. v = d t v = t v = velocity (m/s) ℓ = length (m) t = time (s) 7/22/2008 © studyphysics.ca Warning! Notice that I said length , not wave length . This is because we are only looking at a pulse for now, not a wave train. Illustration 1: A pulse, created in a skipping rope, traveling to the right.
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48_vel_boundaries - Lesson 48: Wave Velocity and Boundaries...

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