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Standing waves and boundary conditions

Reflection of a transverse wave from a fixed end

We have seen that when a pulse meets a fixed endpoint, the pulse is reflected, but it is inverted. Since a transverse wave is a series of pulses, a transverse wave meeting a fixed endpoint is also reflected and the reflected wave is inverted. That means that the peaks and troughs are swapped around.

Reflection of a transverse wave from a fixed end.

Reflection of a transverse wave from a free end

If transverse waves are reflected from an end, which is free to move, the waves sent down the string are reflected but do not suffer a phase shift as shown in [link] .

Reflection of a transverse wave from a free end.

Standing waves

What happens when a reflected transverse wave meets an incident transverse wave? When two waves move in opposite directions, through each other, interference takes place. If the two waves have the same frequency and wavelength then standing waves are generated.

Standing waves are so-called because they appear to be standing still.

Investigation : creating standing waves

Tie a rope to a fixed object such that the tied end does not move. Continuously move the free end up and down to generate firstly transverse waves and later standing waves.

We can now look closely how standing waves are formed. [link] shows a reflected wave meeting an incident wave.

A reflected wave (solid line) approaches the incident wave (dashed line).

When they touch, both waves have an amplitude of zero:

A reflected wave (solid line) meets the incident wave (dashed line).

If we wait for a short time the ends of the two waves move past each other and the waves overlap. To find the resultant wave, we add the two together.

A reflected wave (solid line) overlaps slightly with the incident wave (dashed line).

In this picture, we show the two waves as dotted lines and the sum of the two in the overlap regionis shown as a solid line:

The important thing to note in this case is that there are some points where the two waves always destructively interfere to zero.If we let the two waves move a little further we get the picture below:

Again we have to add the two waves together in the overlap region to see what the sum of the waves looks like.

In this case the two waves have moved half a cycle past each other but because they are completely out of phase they cancel out completely.

When the waves have moved past each other so that they are overlapping for a large region the situation looks like a waveoscillating in place. The following sequence of diagrams show what the resulting wave will look like. To make it clearer, the arrows at the top of the picture show peaks where maximum positiveconstructive interference is taking place. The arrows at the bottom of the picture show places where maximum negative interference istaking place.

As time goes by the peaks become smaller and the troughs become shallower but they do not move.

For an instant the entire region will look completely flat.

The various points continue their motion in the same manner.

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Siyavula textbooks: grade 10 physical science. OpenStax CNX. Aug 29, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11245/1.3
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