Waves, Sound and Light

Topics: Electromagnetic radiation, Light, Wavelength Pages: 3 (1038 words) Published: June 10, 2012
Its weird how some people don’t question the things that are obvious to us. The things we see, how do we see it? What makes it visible to us? Is it only because we have eyes, or is there another factor. The great Aristotle explained it by having something in our eyes that emits “something” to an object and that’s why things are visible to us. Another question we could ask from our daily life is that how come we can hear? What is it that we hear? Why do we hear it and deaf people don’t? How do we receive any sound? People use sound all the time. We rely on sounds to communicate. Unexpected noises may warn us of danger. The sounds we hear tell us a lot about our surroundings. Many animals also use sound. Even animals that live in water. Since only the very top of the ocean receives light from the sun, animals have difficulty using their eyes to find their way around in deeper waters. Once animals dive, they rely heavily on their hearing to sense their environment. In this essay I’m going to answer these questions by explaining in turn what light and sound are, but first we need to know what waves are in order to make it easy to understand the others. Waves exist in both sound and light. Or to make a better sense, it is what makes them exist. Waves are vibrations that transfer energy from place to place within a medium. The medium could be solid, liquid or gas. It is the medium that vibrates as the waves travel through. There are some waves that don’t need to travel through a substance. They may be able to travel through a medium, but they do not have to. Visible light, infrared rays, microwaves and other types of electromagnetic radiation are like this. They can travel through empty space. Waves are characterized with three things: Amplitude, wavelength and frequency. Amplitude It is when waves travel, they set up patterns of disturbance. The amplitude of a wave is it maximum of disturbance. Wavelength from its name you can realize what does it mean however, it...
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