# Electromagnetic Waves Frequency

• sarvesh0303

#### sarvesh0303

I was watching the lectures on the MIT OCW course 5.111 where it was said that electromagnetic radiations are periodic variations of the electric field. Does it mean that when we are talking about electromagnetic radiation, frequency indicates how quickly do the electric fields change(their direction and magnitude).

Yes - a frequency of 1Hz means that there is one cycle of oscillation of the fields per second. A cycle is the period during which an oscillation goes through a complete range of values - up, down and back to the beginning. Frequency is 1/(time taken for one complete cycle). That goes for all forms of oscillation btw.

Thanks . And does amplitude represent the maximum magnitude the electric field can reach? What really puzzles me is what the wavelength represents in this case.

sarvesh0303 said:
And does amplitude represent the maximum magnitude the electric field can reach?

Yes.

What really puzzles me is what the wavelength represents in this case.

It's the distance along the direction that the wave is traveling, between two points of maximum magnitude, or between two points of minimum magnitude.

Thanks a lot guys!

## 1. What are electromagnetic waves?

Electromagnetic waves are a type of energy that is emitted and absorbed by charged particles. They are made up of electric and magnetic fields that oscillate perpendicular to each other and travel at the speed of light.

## 2. What is the frequency of electromagnetic waves?

The frequency of electromagnetic waves is the number of complete cycles that the waves go through in one second. It is measured in Hertz (Hz) and determines the energy and wavelength of the waves.

## 3. How does the frequency of electromagnetic waves affect their behavior?

The frequency of electromagnetic waves affects their behavior in several ways. Higher frequency waves have shorter wavelengths and carry more energy, making them more dangerous. Lower frequency waves, on the other hand, have longer wavelengths and are often used for communication purposes.

## 4. Can electromagnetic waves have a negative frequency?

No, electromagnetic waves cannot have a negative frequency. Frequency is a measure of how often a wave oscillates, and a negative frequency would mean that the wave is oscillating in the opposite direction, which is not possible.

## 5. How are electromagnetic waves used in everyday life?

Electromagnetic waves are used in a variety of ways in everyday life. Some common examples include radio waves for communication, microwaves for cooking, infrared waves for remote controls, and visible light for seeing. They also play a crucial role in technologies such as cell phones, Wi-Fi, and X-rays.