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03part1 - 3: PROPERTIES OF WAVES INTRODUCTION Your ear is...

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3: Properties of Waves–1 3: P ROPERTIES OF W AVES I NTRODUCTION Your ear is complicated device that is designed to detect variations in the pressure of the air at your eardrum. The reason this is so useful is that disturbances in the air travel out in all directions as sound pressure waves . If someone slams a door in the next room, the disturbance in pressure travels through the air and soon reaches your ear. Sound waves travel very fast, so even if a car is coming your way at 70 mph, the sound made by the car will probably get to you in time for you to get out of the way. The first lab introduced you to the way different types of vibrations are perceived as sound. This lab will introduce you to the way sound travels through the air, as a wave . Most of the rest of the semester will be spent examining these two aspects of physical sound in considerably greater detail. In general, a wave is a disturbance traveling in a medium. If the disturbance is perpendicular to the direction of wave propagation the wave is called transverse, if the disturbance in along the direction of wave propagation – the wave is called longitudinal. S MALL G ROUP A CTIVITIES WITH S LINKIES Several basic properties of wave behavior can be demonstrated with long springs and slinkies. We will do many of our experiments with springs and strings because you can see the waves on a spring, which you can’t do with sound waves. Your study of sound will be easier for you if you can learn to make
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03part1 - 3: PROPERTIES OF WAVES INTRODUCTION Your ear is...

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