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Simple Harmonic Motion and Wave Motion

  1. Nov 28, 2007 #1

    I was wondering if anyone could explain Simple Harmonic Motion. My physics teacher has tried and I have read the parts in the book, but I am still confused. I know how to find the amplitude from the standard form equations, but I really just don't understand how to get the period and the frequencies. Does it have something to do with the [tex]\omega[/tex]t+[tex]\phi[/tex] thing or am I just way off? (If it doesn't, please explain what [tex]\omega[/tex]t+[tex]\phi[/tex] tells you.) Thank you!

    -- Commodore
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 28, 2007 #2


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    For a sinusoidal (sin or cos) wave, the parameter [itex]\omega[/itex] is the angular velocity and multiplied by t gives an angular position which is linear with time - [itex]\omega[/itex]t is always increasing. The other parameter in the argument, [itex]\phi[/itex], is the phase angle, which simply shifts the sine wave in time.

    See if this helps - http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/shm.html
  4. Nov 30, 2007 #3
    Thank you very much for the information. I am about to see if I understand it by taking my last test (before the final).
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