PHYS 101 Lecture Notes - Lecture 30: Angular Frequency, Wavenumber, Eardrum

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PHYS 101: Physics for the Life Sciences Lecture 30:
Waves and Wave Motion
There are two types of waves:
1. Transverse Waves:
The disturbance is perpendicular to the direction of motion
e.g. a wave on a string
2. Longitudinal Waves:
The disturbance is in the direction of motion
e.g. a spring
Note: We are referring to the motion of the disturbance not the medium itself (i.e. not the
string or spring).
Consider giving a string single pulse:
At
t=0
the string would look like this:
At
t=t1>0
the string looks like this:
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At
t=t2>0
the string looks like this:
If we ignore dissipation, the wave retains its shape and the shape just moves with
speed
V
.
This function y is described as
y=f(x).
This function y is described as
y=f(xVt).
Let’s consider a sinusoidal wave at
t=0.
amplitude = the maximum displacement from the equilibrium position.
λ=¿
wavelength = period = distance from crest-to-crest.
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