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Confused about progressive waves

  1. Oct 9, 2011 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    I know that progressive waves are waves moving through a medium causing disturbance, transmitting energy. However, i'm confused over some concepts:

    1)When the source emits out energy in the form of waves, if it passes through a medium such as water, the energy moves at v = fλ through water.

    2)Any water particles caught in its path will simply bob up and down with SHM? or will it move along with the wave? so in short, does the wave actually move right or is it simply the energy moving right?

    3)If the above is true, then won't simply dropping a stone cause ripples and all water to spread out away from the stone leaving no water left?

    4)what determines the distance between the particles that undergo SHM


    2. Relevant equations

    For movement? of entire wave
    v = fλ

    Individual wave particles at undergo SHM
    x = x0cos(ωt + ∅)


    3. The attempt at a solution
    I've tried thinking about it and here are some of my thoughts:

    Transverse progressive waves
    -particles simply vibrate about their equilibrium position in SHM
    -vibration results in an advancing waveform and transfer of energy in direction of propagation
    conclusion: wave moves right, particles within wave simply vibrate perpendicular to direction of motion


    Longitudinal progressive waves
    -Particles vibrate about their equilibrium position
    --vibration results in an advancing waveform and transfer of energy in direction of propagation
    -conclusion: wave moves right, particles within wave simply vibrate parallel to direction of motion
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 9, 2011 #2
    Water particles simply vibrate about their postions ; only the energy is transferred away from the point where the waves are produced.
     
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