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Homework Help: Inertial frame where plane waves have the same frequency

  1. Sep 6, 2016 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Plane harmonic waves of [itex] 1/p, 1/q, 1/r [/itex] and [itex] 1/s [/itex] are travelling, respectively, in the directions of the (non-unit) vectors [itex](1,1,1), (1,-1,-1), (-1,1,-1) [/itex] and [itex](-1,-1,1)[/itex]. Show that there exists an inertial coordinate system in which they have the same frequency if and only if
    3(p+q-r-s)^2 + 3(p-q+r-s)^2 + 3(p-q-r+s)^2 < (p+q+r+s)^2

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
    So I can make null forward pointing vectors which are:
    1/p(1,1/\sqrt{3}, 1/\sqrt{3},1/\sqrt{3})
    and so on.
    I notice each of the vectors components 'correspond' to one of the terms in the inequality. That is, the right hand side corresponds to the first compenent of each vector, the second component of the vectors corresponds to the first term on the left, the third component of the vectors corresponds to the second term on the left, and the fourth component of the vector corresponds to the third term on the left.

    I would like some kind of hint because I'm not sure where to go with this. It seems that I am not seeing a key fact.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 11, 2016 #2
    Thanks for the thread! This is an automated courtesy bump. Sorry you aren't generating responses at the moment. Do you have any further information, come to any new conclusions or is it possible to reword the post? The more details the better.
  4. Sep 14, 2016 #3
    I made a mistake in copying this out. It should be ''plane harmonic waves of frequencies.''
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