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Ch 14: Understanding Waves

About This Chapter

Use this interesting chapter to ensure you understand waves before taking an important test or to get through your homework. Our short lessons are written by professional instructors and accompanied by multiple-choice quizzes that test your knowledge.

Understanding Waves - Chapter Summary

This chapter's expertly designed lessons cover waves and the subjects related to them. These include vibrations and waves, the difference between mechanical and electromagnetic waves, various wave parameters, and resonance. After you finish this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Define wave reflection with examples
  • Provide an overview and definition of a refracted wave
  • Discuss energy, wavelength and spectrum as they relate to electromagnetic radiation
  • Detail the concept of wave-particle duality
  • Describe the effects of electromagnetic radiation on living cells
  • Identify the different types of lenses
  • Outline light reflection, absorption and transmission
  • Explore the transfer of information and energy in waves

Work at your own pace as you complete the lessons in this chapter, going back to review this information as necessary. To ensure you're ready for an exam, take lesson quizzes and a chapter test. If you still have questions, submit them through the Dashboard and one of our instructors will answer.

12 Lessons in Chapter 14: Understanding Waves
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Vibrations and Waves: Energy and Motion

1. Vibrations and Waves: Energy and Motion

What is a wave? What causes waves, and how do they travel from one place to another? This lesson will guide you through the basics of waves. We'll discuss their origins from vibrations and investigate how they carry energy through a medium.

Wave Propagation: Mechanical Waves vs. Electromagnetic Waves

2. Wave Propagation: Mechanical Waves vs. Electromagnetic Waves

In this lesson, we'll learn about key differences in the two main types of waves, mechanical and electromagnetic. By the end of the lesson you'll be able to define these two types of waves and compare how these waves move through space.

Wave Parameters: Wavelength, Amplitude, Period, Frequency & Speed

3. Wave Parameters: Wavelength, Amplitude, Period, Frequency & Speed

How do we measure and describe waves? How do waves differ based upon their shapes? This lesson will guide you through the five wave parameters - period, frequency, amplitude, wavelength, and speed - that we use to characterize waves.

Resonance: Definition & Transmission of Waves

4. Resonance: Definition & Transmission of Waves

This lesson describes how sound and light waves are affected by the principle of resonance. Learn how resonance occurs through the vibrations and resonant frequencies of objects. You'll investigate everyday examples of resonance and learn how to break a wine glass with your voice!

Reflection of Waves: Definition & Examples

5. Reflection of Waves: Definition & Examples

This lesson will define reflection in the context of waves, summarize the types of reflection, and provide examples of reflection in action. A short quiz will follow.

Refracted Wave: Definition & Overview

6. Refracted Wave: Definition & Overview

This lesson will explain what a refracted wave is, and how it works. We will also discuss why exactly it happens in the context of wave speed. A short quiz will follow.

What is Electromagnetic Radiation? - Wavelength, Spectrum & Energy

7. What is Electromagnetic Radiation? - Wavelength, Spectrum & Energy

Light, microwaves, X-rays, and cell phone transmissions are all examples of electromagnetic radiation. Read more about this fascinating, mostly invisible phenomenon that has been harnessed by humans for so many purposes. A quiz is included.

Wave-Particle Duality: Concept, Explanation & Examples

8. Wave-Particle Duality: Concept, Explanation & Examples

Is light a particle with mass and substance? Or, is it just a wave traveling through space? Most scientists say light is both a particle and a wave! Find out how they came to this strange conclusion as we learn about the theory of wave-particle duality.

Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation on Living Cells

9. Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation on Living Cells

Some forms of electromagnetic radiation can penetrate into your cells and cause a lot of damage to your DNA. In this lesson, learn more about exactly what can happen if you are exposed to radiation.

Lens Types: Simple, Compound & Other Types

10. Lens Types: Simple, Compound & Other Types

In this lesson we will explore what a compound lens is versus a simple lens as well as what it means for a lens to be concave or convex and how these particular lens shapes can be used to correct certain visual impairments.

Light Transmission, Reflection & Absorption

11. Light Transmission, Reflection & Absorption

Light is an electromagnetic wave that can travel through nothing. In this lesson, we will learn how light travels, and what happens to it when it hits something. Will it be absorbed by a material, reflected off of a material or pass through a material?

How Energy & Information is Transferred by Waves

12. How Energy & Information is Transferred by Waves

This lesson explores how waves transfer energy but not mass. You will learn about how energy is transferred by waves, as well as understand the components of waves and see examples of different types of waves.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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