Sunday, January 3, 2010

10-Wave Motion

Wave Motion

A wave is a disturbance that propagates through space and time, usually with transference of energy.

A progressive wave is a wave which transfers energy from one part of a medium to another.

A transverse wave is a wave where the disturbances (oscillations) are at right angles to the direction of propagation.

A longitudinal wave is a wave where the disturbances (oscillations) are along or parallel to the direction of propagation.

A wave speed or speed of propagation is the distance travelled by the wave in unit time.

The frequency is the number of complete disturbances (cycles) in unit time.

The wavelength
is the distance between successive points of same phase in a progressive wave.

The amplitude is the maximum difference of the disturbed quantity from its mean value. (In mechanical waves where the wave has a medium through which to travel, the amplitude is the maximum displacement of any particle from its equilibrium position)

Polarization is a process of confining the oscillations of the vector constituting a transverse wave to one direction. In unpolarized radiation the vector oscillates in all directions perpendicular to the direction of propagation. (In polarization of light, the oscillations of the electric vector of light waves are confined to one direction)


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