Question involving beats and sound waves

  • #1
Hi, I have a question involving beats and sound waves.
When two sound waves (one with a MUCH LARGER Frequency than the other) combine, what would happen? Would there still be a beat pattern? Me, I think that if there still is a beat pattern, it would have the same frequency as that of the highest frequency of one of the combining waves. Am I right, or horribly wrong? I'm really puzzled by this. Thank you very much for your time.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Tom Mattson
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
5,500
8
insertnamehere said:
Me, I think that if there still is a beat pattern, it would have the same frequency as that of the highest frequency of one of the combining waves. Am I right, or horribly wrong?
Check your book and find the formula for the beat frequency. It is not the higher of the two combining frequencies.
 
  • #3
jtbell
Mentor
15,631
3,677
If wave #1 has a much larger frequency than wave #2, then what you get is (approximately) a wave of frequency #1 whose amplitude varies according to frequency #2. This is the principle used in AM (amplitude modulation) radio signals.
 
  • #4
quasar987
Science Advisor
Homework Helper
Gold Member
4,780
12
IMO, the answer can be seen clearly by looking at the "unmanipulated" equation of "beats", i.e. the simple addition of the two waves:

[tex]y(t) = Acos(\omega_1t) + Acos(\omega_2t)[/tex]

what does the addition of these two graph looks like if [itex]\omega_1 << \omega_2[/itex]?
 

Related Threads on Question involving beats and sound waves

Replies
5
Views
10K
  • Last Post
2
Replies
28
Views
6K
Replies
43
Views
4K
  • Last Post
Replies
3
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
4K
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
4K
  • Last Post
Replies
8
Views
14K
Replies
1
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
479
Top