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Do all waves use the same formula share and the same principles?

  1. Dec 21, 2011 #1
    trying to figure out what they mean by this statement.

    do radio/microwaves and audio waves behave the same way? can the formula used to design radar be used to design a speaker?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 21, 2011 #2


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    Well, there's wave equation,

    [itex]{ \partial^2 u \over \partial t^2 } = c^2 \nabla^2 u [/itex]

    (time variable t, spatial variables x1, x2, …, xn, scalar function u = u (x1, x2, …, xn; t))

    The solutions to this PDE behave as waves do. c is associated with the propagation speed of the wave. Unique solutions are obtained by setting more conditions, like the initial state of the wave, or boundary conditions. This equation occurs almost everywhere there are waves.
  4. Dec 21, 2011 #3


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    The OP didn't way where the quote came from, but Google found it:

    And from the same site at http://www.moonaudio.com/shelf1.htm:

    These guys design speakers, and they don't think air transmits acoustic energy?
    Oh, purlease.... :rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:

    High end audio is full of people with more money than sense. If they can sell speaker systems for $0.5m to idiots, good luck to them IMO.

    I see they are also selling 3 feet of wire at a recommended retail price of $4800. What's it made of, solid gold or something? http://www.higherfi.com/cables/1 [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  5. Dec 22, 2011 #4


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    Oh man, I didn't read the link before I posted the above. How awful.
  6. Dec 22, 2011 #5
  7. Dec 22, 2011 #6
    Depends what you mean by "behave"....generally the answer is no.

    For example, audio sound waves are require a medium ...like air...some compressible medium....and cannot be transmitted in a vacuum, like outer space, are relatively slow. Microwaves need no medium and travel close to 'c'. Their frequency range definitions are also different...although that doesn't necessarily mean different behavior in itself.
  8. Dec 22, 2011 #7


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    Generally speaking, different kinds of waves have different underlying principles and therefore have different governing equations (not necessarily the "wave equation"!)

    Many of the analysis techniques, however, find general application across kinds of waves.
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