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Lecture 2

# PHYS1041 Notes Week 2

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Mount Allison University

Physics

PHYS 1041

Dr.David Fleming

Winter

Description

Physics 1041 Notes
January 13th
Waves
• wave: traveling disturbance that transmits energy through a medium
• longitudinal wave: oscillations move in the same direction as the wave
propagation itself
• transverse wave: oscillations move at a 90 degree angle to the wave propagation
• standing wave: a driving process creating a wave pattern that appears to stay in
place
Important variables for waves
• A = amplitude, the maximum value of wave disturbance away from the
equilibrium position (SI units of meters)
• λ (lamda) = wavelength, distance over which a pattern repeats itself, i.e. from
max point to max point (SI units of meters)
• T = period, time of one complete oscillation or wave pattern (SI units of seconds)
• f = frequency, number of wave cycles that pass per unit time (SI units of Hertz)
• v = velocity, speed of travel through a medium (SI units of meters per second)
• F = force (SI units of newtons)
• m = mass (SI units of kilograms)
• g = acceleration due to gravity, equal to approximately 9.81m/s
• L = length of object, i.e. string (SI units of meters)
Important equations for waves:
1
f = v = fλ F = mg v = F
T m / L
Other important equations:
A − B
Percent error = × 100 % where A=measured value and B=theoretical value
B
A− B
Percent difference = ×100% where A and B are two measured values
1 (A+ B)
2
January 15th
Parameters of waves
λ= wavelength
v= speed of wave
f=frequency
all related by the equation = fλ Waves on a string
Two fixed ends:
1st harmonic (Fundamental Frequency)
1
L = λ
2
2nd harmonic (1st overtone)
L = λ
3rd harmonic (2nd overtone)
L = 3λ
2
etc..
mλ
The equation for harmonics with two fixed strings isL = where m is equal to the
2
number of harmonics.
One fixed end and one free end:
1st harmonic (Fundamental Frequency)
1
L = 4λ
2nd harmonic (1st overtone)
L = 3λ
4
3rd harmonic (2nd overtone)
L = 5λ
4
etc..
(2m −1)λ
The equation for harmonics with two fixed strings isL = where m is equal to
2
the number of

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