Report About Mechanical Waves

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  • Topic: Waves, Wave, Light
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  • Published : February 19, 2012
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Mechanical Waves
Background
Mechanical waves are waves which require a medium for propagation since energy is transferred via the motion of the medium. An example of a mechanical wave is sound. Transverse waves are waves which vibrate perpendicular to their direction of propagation. Surface water waves can be classified as a transverse wave. All electromagnetic waves are also examples of transverse waves. A longitudinal wave is a wave in which its particles vibrate parallel to their direction of propagation. Sound waves, earthquake waves and tsunami waves are examples of longitudinal waves.

Some terms to be considered are:
Wavelength: the distance between two successive identical points Frequency: number of waves that pass through a fixed point in a second Amplitude: maximum displacement that particles can move to and from their equilibrium position Crest: Highest points of a wave

Trough: Lowest points of a wave

Aim:
To observe the transmission of waves in a slinky, rope and water surfaces

Hypothesis:
The more energy applied to a specific object, the longer the wave will last

Materials:
* Slinky
* Rope
* Container of water

Risks:
* Pouring too much water into the container may cause it is spill making the floor a hazardous place * Pulling the slinky too far apart may cause injury to either person on each end * Holding the ropes in the air may cause accidents such as tripping or collisions

Method:
Waves in a slinky:
1. Grab each end of the slinky using two people
2. Pull back the slinky to almost three metres
3. Using one person, flick the slinky from the side to create a wave 4. Observe and record what happens
5. Repeat step 3 but with different energy applied

Waves in a rope:
1. Place the rope on the floor and grab each end of it with two people 2. Pull the rope to its extent and using one person, move it from side to side 3. Observe the wave created and record it’s motion

4. Redo...
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