Section 1 review
Waves are oscillations that travel. Waves have amplitude and frequency just like oscillators, but waves have the additional property of wavelength. A wave moves one wavelength forward in each cycle, so the speed of a wave is its wavelength divided by its period. This is equivalent to frequency times wavelength. A wave carries energy that is proportional to both amplitude and frequency. The higher the amplitude, the higher the energy at a given frequency. At equal amplitudes low-frequency waves have less energy than high-frequency waves. Transverse waves cause oscillations that are perpendicular to the direction of the wave’s motion, whereas longitudinal waves cause oscillations that are parallel to the wave’s motion. Read the text aloud
wave, wavelength, transverse, polarization, longitudinal


Review problems and questions

Height versus time and height versus distance for a transverse wave
  1. The figure above shows a graph of the oscillation of a single point on a transverse wave as a function of time and a second graph of the waveform at a given instant as a function of distance. Use the graphs to answer the following questions.
    1. What is the frequency of the wave?
    2. What is the wavelength of the wave?
    3. What is the amplitude of the wave?
    4. What is the speed at which the wave propagates? Read the text aloud Show
  1. A water wave has a frequency of 2 Hz and a wavelength of 1.5 m. What is the speed at which this wave travels?
    1. 0.75 m/s
    2. 1.5 m/s
    3. 2.0 m/s
    4. 3.0 m/s Read the text aloud Show
    1. If you are using a water tank in an investigation into waves, is a still image or a video a better choice for measuring wavelength?
    2. How about for measuring frequency?
    3. Amplitude?
    4. Velocity of the wave? Read the text aloud Show

Take a Quiz

Previous Page Next Page419