# What is Oscillators: Definition and 158 Discussions

Oscillation is the repetitive variation, typically in time, of some measure about a central value (often a point of equilibrium) or between two or more different states. The term vibration is precisely used to describe mechanical oscillation. Familiar examples of oscillation include a swinging pendulum and alternating current.
Oscillations occur not only in mechanical systems but also in dynamic systems in virtually every area of science: for example the beating of the human heart (for circulation), business cycles in economics, predator–prey population cycles in ecology, geothermal geysers in geology, vibration of strings in guitar and other string instruments, periodic firing of nerve cells in the brain, and the periodic swelling of Cepheid variable stars in astronomy.

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1. ### Electrical Electromagnetic confinement and Oscillators

I am wondering if it is possible to use two electromagnets oscillating at about 1 ghz to suspend an amount of ferrofluid in an acrylic chamber. As I understand it, 1 ghz should be sufficient enough to get the ferrofluid away from each magnet, as after a quick google search, magnetic fields move...
2. ### 3 mass coupled oscillators

Hi, I am not sure if I have derived the matrix correctly, because of my results in task b I solved task 1 as follows, I assumed that all three particles move to the right $$m \dot{x_1}=-k(x_1 - x_2)$$ $$2m \dot{x_2}=-k(x_2-x_2)-3k(x_2-x_3)$$ $$3m \dot{x_3}=-3k(x_3-x_2)$$ Then I simply...
3. ### I Are Planck's black body oscillators QHOs?

What is the connection between (1) Planck's quantum hypothesis that the oscillators of a blackbody can possess only discrete quantities of energy E=nhv n=1,2,3.. (2) the fact that the energy eigenvalues of the quantum harmonic oscillator wavefunction are also separated by intervals of hv...
4. ### Energy conservation: electromagnetic wave in matter

Hi, I completely failed this homework. I mean I think I know what happen, but I don't know how to show it mathematically. The energy lost by the wave is used to oscillate the electrons inside the conductor. Thus, the electrons acts like some damped driven oscillators. I guess I have to find...
5. ### A Anharmonic oscillators with closed-form solutions

There are some articles from the 1980s where the authors discuss 1D quantum oscillators where ##V(x)## has higher than quadratic terms in it but an exact solution can still be found. One example is in this link: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/0305-4470/14/9/001 Has anyone tried to...
6. ### Coupled oscillators -- period of normal modes

Hi, I know there's are 2 normal modes because the system has 2 mass. I did the Newton's law for both mass. ##m\ddot x_1 = -\frac{mgx_1}{l} -k(x_1 - x_2)## (1) ##m\ddot x_2 = -\frac{mgx_2}{l} +k(x_1 - x_2)## (2) In the pendulum mode ##x_1 = x_2## and in the breathing mode ##x_1 = -x_2## I get...
7. ### Partition function of a particle with two harmonic oscillators

Here is the solution I have been given: But I really don't understand this solution. Why can I just add these two exponential factors (adding two individual partition...
8. ### I Symmetry and Finite Coupled Oscillators

For an infinite system of coupled oscillators of identical mass and spring constant k. The matrix equation of motion is \ddot{X}=M^{-1}KX The eigenvectors of the solutions are those of the translation operator (since the translation operator and M^{-1}K commute). My question is, for the...
9. ### Linear chain of oscillators and normal coordinates

Hello, I hope the equation formatting comes out right but I'll correct it if not. So far, I have attempted to write ##\ddot{a}_k(t) = \sum_{n}(u^{k}_n)^*\ddot{q}_n(t) ##. Then I expand the right hand side with the original equation of motion, and I rewrite each coordinate according to its own...
10. ### I Exponential of momenta to entangle harmonic oscillators

Consider two harmonic oscillators, described by annihilation operators a and b, both initially in the vacuum state. Let us imagine that there is a coupling mechanism governed by the Hamiltonian H=P_A P_B, where P_i is the momentum operator for the oscillator i. For example P_A =...
11. ### An interesting coupled oscillators problem (multiple springs and masses)

I need to find the differential equations for each mass. ##y_1## is the equilibrium position, and ##y_2## is the second equilibrium position for each mass. I was thinking consider the next sistem: \begin{eqnarray} k\Delta y-mg&=&m\frac{d^2 y_2}{dt^2} \\ -2k\Delta y_1 -k\Delta y_2 -2mg...
12. ### A Converting between field operators and harmonic oscillators

Suppose we have a Hamiltonian containing a term of the form where ∂=d/dr and A(r) is a real function. I would like to study this with harmonic oscillator ladder operators. The naïve approach is to use where I have set ħ=1 so that This term is Hermitian because r and p both are.*...
13. ### Induction Heater Design: Resources & Tips from Jeff

Hello; I am trying to come up with an induction heater design for a machine that i am working on and am having some trouble planning it out. Anybody have some good resources? I have scoured Google and there are tons on there. I am a bit unsure how to get started. I have an induction heater...
14. ### Avalanche relaxation oscillator biasing resistor

I've tried the circuit in this article. It works very well and I've obtained 2ns clear pulses at 150 V (the main issue was to find the right avalanche voltage, which turned out to be 150-160V for my 2n3904 transistor). While the basic principles of operation in this circuit is clear for me, I...
15. ### I Simple harmonic oscillators on floating object in liquid

How can I find omega on an object that is floating on water which is moving up and down on the object? The problem goes by giving you a cylindrical object with radius r and height H, pw(density of water), pc(density of circle) and x(t)=a*cos(wt). I do not understand why pw*pi*r^2*dg=pc*pi*r^2Hg
16. ### Perturbation on an oscillator

Hi, I am reading the Hajimiri-Lee phase noise model, and got a question on that. If you have an LC tank circuit that is free-running and I inject a current i(t) (dirac current) at instants either t1 or t2 (shown in the figure), depending on when you inject the phase of the output changes (as...
17. ### I Why high Q factors have low phase noise

If we define Q factor as 2*pi* energy stored/ energy dissipated per cycle, what's the physical insight behind obtaining low phase noise for oscillators when we have high Q factors? (I know the mathematical derivation based on finding the frequency profile of an oscillator (like LC oscillator)...
18. ### I Sketching simple coupled oscillators

If I'm given dx/dt = 2π - sin(y - x), dy/dx = 2π - sin(x - y), and finally the conditions x(0) = pi/2 and y(0) = 0, what would be the best way to hand sketch the solutions without using an explicit solution?
19. ### Weak Damping - how to relate the amplitude and phase difference

Homework Statement Derive the relationship bewteen x_{max}, A_{+}, A_{-} and \phi Homework Equations x(t) = e^{\gamma t}(A_{+}e^{i \omega_d t} + A_{-}e^{-i \omega_d t}) x(t) = x_{max} e^{\gamma t} cos(\omega_d t + \phi) The Attempt at a Solution I know the e^{\gamma t} cancels and for the...
20. ### Oscillators and conservation of energy

In the equation 7.4, the author is taking v0=√(C/M)*x, and I don't get where does that come from. I would really appreciatte your help, thanks.
21. ### Calculating Total Weight of 10 Oscillators & 8 Quanta of Energy

1. The problem statement Consider the case of 10 oscillators and eight quanta of energy. Determine the dominant configuration of energy for this system by identifying energy configurations and calculating the corresponding weights. What is the probability of observing the dominant...
22. ### Coupled 2D harmonic oscillators

1. The problem statementhttps://www.physicsforums.com/attachments/225935 Homework Equations3. I have rescaled coordinates which are X=(x1+x2)/√2 and Y=√3(x1-x2)/√2 for which the potential term becomes for a 2D harmonic oscillator of coordinates X and Y. But how to express Kinetic terms in terms...
23. ### Partition Function for N Quantum Oscillators

Homework Statement For 300 level Statistical Mechanics, we are asked to find the partition function for a Quantum Harmonic Oscillator with energy levels E(n) = hw(n+1/2). No big deal. We are then asked to find the partition function N such oscillators. Here I am confused. Homework Equations...
24. ### Basic Radio Questions -- Oscillators, Mixers and Modulators

1 - Is a carrier wave always made by some kind of oscillating/oscillator circuit? 2 - Does modulation "modify" or better "modulates" the carrier wave to change the audio signal to amplitude or frequency modulated? 3 - What is the difference between a "radio mixer" and "modulator" do they have...
25. ### Confusion about two modes of coupled oscillators having same frequency

I am studying coupled oscillations and one of the refrance I'm using says that two modes can have same frequency whereas the other one says it's impossible to have same frequency for two modes. Please help.
26. ### Solve a system of two linked harmonic oscillators

$$m_1 \ddot{x} - m_1 g + \frac{k(d-l)}{d}x=0$$ $$m_2 \ddot{y} - m_2 \omega^2 y + \frac{k(d-l)}{d}y=0$$ It is two masses connected by a spring. ##d=\sqrt{x^2 + y^2}## and ##l## is the length of the relaxed spring (a constant). What is the strategy to solve such a system? I tried substituting...
27. ### Damped Oscillators: Homework Solution

Homework Statement Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution After the release the block will move towards right and friction will be towards the left. ##M\ddot x = f - kx## Solving for ##x##, ##x = A\cos (\omega t) + B\sin(\omega t) + f/k## Initial conditions are ##x(0) = x_0, \dot...
28. ### I Are quantum harmonic oscillators and radiation modes equal?

Are quantum harmonic oscillators, vacuum fluctuations and radiation modes the same? Is vacuum energy caused by vacuum quantum fluctuations?
29. ### Relationship between period and time in oscillators

Homework Statement If the amplitude of a weakly damped oscillator decreased to 1/e of its initial value after n periods, show that the frequency of the oscillator must be approximately [1 − (8π2n2)-1] times the frequency of an undamped oscillator with the same natural frequency. Homework...
30. ### Quantum Books with exercises dealing with harmonic oscillators

Hello! I'm looking for books (or webpages, anything is welcome) with exercises dealing with methods applied to the harmonic oscillator, especially creation and annihilation operators, coherent states, squeezed states, minimum uncertainty states, Fock states, displacement operators... I have...
31. ### GRE question: oscilloscope with two oscillators

Homework Statement Hello! The problem is the one I attached. Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution They say the answer is A, but I am not sure why. From what I remember from lab class, when you put 2 signals on x and y-axis you get usually a closed loop, like D or E. I think D happens...
32. ### Partition function for harmonic oscillators

Homework Statement Calculate the partition function, the entropy and the heat capacity of a system of N independent harmonic oscillators, with hamiltonian ##H = \sum_1^n(p_i^2+\omega^2q_i^2)## Homework Equations ##Z = \sum_E e^{-E/kT}## The Attempt at a Solution I am not really sure what to...
33. ### I Not the classic coupled oscillators

I have a system of a rod hanging on a single point, that can oscilate 360 degrees. Attached to it's lower end is a rotating disc. As you release the pendulum with a starting angle of some kind, the system oscilates. Can anyone help me analize the frequencies related to this motion? Thanks!
34. ### Weakly Coupled Oscillators

Homework Statement Two simple pendulums os equal length L=1m are connected with spring with a spring constant K=0,05 Mg/L. The pendulums are started by realeasing one of them from a displaced position. The subsequent motion is characterized by an oscillatory energy exchange between the...
35. ### I Energy spectrum of a chain of quantum oscillators

I am trying to derive the energy spectrum of a 1D chain of identical quantum oscillators from its Hamiltonian by Fourier transforming the position and momentum operator. I came across this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phonon#Quantum_treatment However, I am unsure of the mathematics...
36. ### Disappearing energy from a series connection of coupled oscillators

I have been having trouble getting the calculation of energy for a chain of coupled oscillators to come out correctly. The program was run in Matlab and is intended to calculate the energy of a system of connected Hooke's law oscillators. Right now there is only stiffness and no dampening...
37. ### Infinite one-dimensional oscillators

Homework Statement Consider a series of ##N## particles in a line, with the displacement of each particle from its equilibrium position labelled by ##q_{n}## and it conjugate momentum labelled by ##p_n##. Assume that the interaction between the particles is pairwise, so that the Hamiltonian is...
38. ### Is the Hamiltonian of a string given by a sum of harmonic oscillators?

Homework Statement This problem is a continuation of the problem I posted in this thread: https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/equation-of-motion-from-a-lagrangian.867784/ (We have set the mass per unit length in that question to ##\sigma## = 1 to simplify some of the formulae a little.)...
39. ### I Damped Oscillators and Binomial theorem step

I uploaded a picture of what I am stuck on. I understand the equation of motion 3.4.5a for a damped oscillator but I don't understand how to use binomial theorem to get the expanded equation 3.4.5b. I am no where near clever enough to figure this one out. I know how to use binomial theorem to...
40. ### Normal modes and degrees of freedom in coupled oscillators

Not a textbook/homework problem so I'm not using the format (hopefully that's ok). Can someone offer an explanation of normal modes and how to calculate the degrees of freedom in a system of coupled oscillators? From what I've seen the degrees of freedom seems to be equal to the number of...
41. ### Am I the only one who enjoys solving Harmonic Oscillators?

Hey, this is more of a "share" theard, instead of a "Question" thread. I am starting my second year in a Phisics BS.c. I noticed that while poeple around me at school centinly understand HO's as well as I do, I seem to be one of the only ones who is really enjoying the subject. It is my...
42. ### Quantum Books on Harmonic Oscillators

I was thinking about harmonic oscillators last night when explaining the non-zero ground state energy of the quantum version to a non-scientific friend and the conversation pushed my curiosity a little so I'm wondering if anyone happens to know about any books solely about harmonic oscillators...
43. ### Understanding the SPI Interface: Clock, Data & Oscillators

From my understanding of how SPI interface works, the clock basically sends out data when it is set to HIGH(or LOW). So, why does it seem like in pictures of the SPI lines, the setting of HIGH and LOW appears periodically. Can't we just put data onto DATA line, turn CLOCK line on to send, then...
44. ### Vacuum tubes and electronic oscillators

I've been reading up about vacuum tubes and (more specifically) the Audion, and how they were used for instruments/amplifiers. This isn't anything I'm learning about on my degree, just things I'm reading up on myself so forgive me if I'm a little slow to grasp some parts. I understand how the...
45. ### Quantum harmonic oscillators DE wavefunction

My question concerns a really simple differential equation for the zeroth wavefunction of a harmonic oscillator. I have pretty much got it but my solution just differs by a constant,so I thought why think when one can ask other people :). Here is the equation: Where the x star represent a...
46. ### Relaxation Time in Damped Harmonic Oscillators

Relaxation time is defined as the time taken for mechanical energy to decay to 1/e of its original value. Why do we take a specific ratio of 1/e? What is its significance?
47. ### What are harmonic oscillators and physical systems?

My question is how we describe a harmonic oscillate. Wikipedia says, "a harmonic oscillator is a system that, when displaced from its equilibrium position, experiences a restoring force, F, proportional to the displacement, x." My question is, how is the harmonic oscillator a "system"? I thought...
48. ### Link between harmonic functions and harmonic oscillators?

I'm a bit confused wether or not there is a link between harmonic functions (solutions of the Laplace pde) and harmonic oscillating systems? What is the meaning of "harmonic" in these cases? Thanks!
49. ### Determine the value of Q for each of the oscillators

Homework Statement http://dspace.jorum.ac.uk/xmlui/bitstream/handle/10949/1022/Items/T356_1_030i.jpg [Broken] Taking measurements from Figure 1, determine the value of Q for each of the oscillators represented. Explain how you obtained your answer. I haven't made an attempt as answering this...
50. ### Coupled Oscillator: Solve 4.35 Homework

Homework Statement Note this question is from Morin 4.35. The system in the example in Section 4.5 is modified by subjecting the left mass to a driving force Fd*cos(2ωt), and the right mass to a driving force 2Fd cos(2ωt), where ω^2 = k/m. Find the particular solution for x1 and x2. Just...