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# Light and Sound

TermDefinition
Wave A means of transferring energy from one point to another
Harmonics Frequencies of a fundamental frequency
Resonance The transfer of energy between two bodies of the same natural frequency
Sound Intensity The rate at which energy is crossing through each square metre of area, at right angles to the direction in which the sound is travelling. (W/m^2)
Threshold of Hearing The minimum intensity audible to the average human ear at a frequency of 1KHz (1x10^-12)
Threshold of Pain Intensities above 1W/m^2 cause pain and may cause permanent ear damage
Doppler Effect The apparent change in frequency of a sound due to the relative motion of the source of a sound compared with the observer. approach = f= cf/c-v; away = f= cf/c+v
Laws of Reflection 1. The incident ray, the normal and the reflected ray are all in the same plane 2. The angle of incidence is equal to the angle of reflection
Laws of Refraction 1. (Snell's Law) sin i/sin r is constant, this constant is known as the refractive index of the medium and is denoted by n 2. The incident, the normal and the refracted ray are all in the same plane
Critical Angle The angle of incidence in the denser medium for which the angle of refraction in the less dense medium is90 degrees
Total Internal Reflection This occurs when the angel of incidence in the denser medium exceeds the critical angle
Transverse Wave A wave in which the vibrations are at right angles to the direction in which the energy is travelling
Longitudinal Wave A wave in which the vibrations are parallel to the direction in which the wave is moving.
Wavelength The distance between two successive crest
Amplitude The maximum displacement from the baseline
Frequency The number of complete cycles of a wave passing a point per second (Hz) λ = v/f
Period The time taken for one complete cycle of a wave
Refraction The bending of a wave as it passes from one medium to the next
Diffraction The spreading out of a wave beyond an obstacle
Spectrometer / Grating Formula dsin0 = nλ
Interference Interference occurs when two or more waves meet - amplitude of the resultant wave is equal to the algebraic sum of the amplitudes of the interfering waves.
Coherent Source Sources are coherent if they are in phase and have the same frequency
Polarisation This is when vibrations of a wave are confined to one plane only
Dispersion The separating out of white light into its constituent colours
Primary Colours Red, Green, Blue - together they combine to give white light
Secondary Colours Yellow, Cyan, Magenta - these are produced when primary colours are mixed in equal intensity
Complementary Colours When a primary colour and a secondary colour combine to give white light
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