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Waves Vocabulary

Gage Hackenburg

Waves Oscillations that can carry energy
Oscillation An up and down or back and fourth motion.
Vacuum Space that has no matter in it.
Mechanical Waves Waves that move through matter.
Types of Mechanical Waves Sound waves; Waves in water.
Electromagnetic Waves Waves that can travel through vacuums.
Types of Electromagnetic Waves Light waves; X-rays; Radio waves.
Wave Properties The four main characteristics of a wave.
Amplitude One half the distance between a wave's high point and low point.
Crest A wave's high point.
Trough A wave's low point
Resting Point The center of the wave.
Wavelength and Symbol Measured from a point on one wave to the same point on the next wave (Crest to Crest; Trough to Trough) Symbol - λ
Wavelength Units Meter
3 Ways to measure wavelength are: From Crest to Crest, from Trough to Trough, from the resting point.
Frequency The amount of waves that pass through a fixed point in a given unit of time.
Units for Frequency Hertz (Hz)
Wave Speed The time it takes for a wave to move from one point to another.
Wave Speed Units Velocity (m/s)
Wave Speed Equation Wave Speed = Frequency x Wavelength (v = f x λ)
Medium The matter a wave travels through.
Reflection When a wave bounces off of a surface; a mirror.
Law of Reflection Waves get reflected in a particular way.
Reflected Ray The wave coming from a reflection.
Incident Ray A wave before it has been reflected.
Refraction The bending of waves caused when they travel at different speeds in different mediums; legs look shorter in a pool.
Diffraction The bending of waves around a barrier or the spreading of waves past small openings; ocean waves coming through a pier.
Interference The result of waves colliding with each other.
Constructive Interference Waves colliding creating a larger wave.
Destructive Interference Waves colliding cancelling each other out.
Absorption The transfer of energy from a wave to matter as it passes through it.
Absorbed Colors Colors that are being absorbed by as substance, making them unable to be seen.
Reflected Colors Colors that bounce off a substance, making them appear visible.
Electromagnetic Waves Transverse waves that osculate in a perpendicular pattern.
Radio Waves Transmit music; longest electromagnetic wavelength; 0.3 m<.
Microwaves Cook food; 0.3-0.003 m.
Infrared Waves Just longer than a red wave; emitted by warm objects.
Visible Light Visible to humans; emit color; 700-400 nano-meters.
Ultraviolet Waves Just over violet; emitted by the sun; 400-10 nano-meters.
X-Rays Higher frequency than UV; can see through skin, but not bone.
Gamma Rays Highest frequency waves ; radioactive and harmful to humans.
Visible Light Spectrum From red, the highest frequency visible color, to violet, the lowest frequency visible color.
Longitudinal Wave Waves that oscillate the same direction they move.
Expansion When the wave in a longitudinal wave stretches out.
Compression When the wave in a longitudinal wave presses in.
Intensity How much energy a sound wave passes through a certain area.
Units of Sound Decibel (dB)
Pitch The difference of a sound's frequency.
Analog Signal Carry out information but vary continuously in both amplitude and frequency.
Digital Signal Information carried out as wave pulses in the form of zeros and ones.
Created by: 2022gaha



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