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Homework Help: Sound Waves Question

  1. Feb 8, 2010 #1
    Refraction of sound is a term that refers to the fact that...

    A. sound bounces off a smooth surface just as light bounces off a mirror.
    B. different parts of a wave front travel at different speeds.
    C. different frequencies of sound waves travel at different speeds.
    D. sound waves only contain a fraction of the total energy emitted by the source.


    3. I think the answer is B, but I'm looking for some clarification. Thanks
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 8, 2010 #2
    The answer is B.
    Answer A is reflection and answer C is dispersion.
    In this diagram, the wavefront is AB moving to CD
    In a time t, point A travels AC, point B travels BD
    BD is a greater distance than AC.
    Different points on the wavefront travel at different speeds when refraction takes place.
    http://www.iop.org/activity/education/Projects/Teaching%20Advanced%20Physics/Vibrations%20and%20Waves/Images%20300/img_mid_4455.gif
     
  4. Feb 8, 2010 #3
    Thank you very very much! :smile:
     
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