# cueFlash

## Glossary of Waves

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Is light a mechanical or electromagnetic wave?
electromagnetic wave
How is the amplitude of a longitudinal wave measured?
It is a measure of how compressed or rarefied a medium becomes.
Where are the nodes in a longitudinal wave located?
In the middle of a compression or rarefaction.
What does the amplitude of a wave measure?
How much energy the wave has.
Is light a transverse or longitudinal wave?
transverse wave
What units is frequency measured in?
Hertz (Hz)
Where are the nodes in a transverse wave located?
Midway between the crests and troughs.
What is the definition of a VIBRATION?
A repeated back-and-forth or up-and-down motion.
How are waves classified?
According to how they move.
What is the definition of a WAVELENGTH?
The distance between two corresponding parts of a wave.
What two broad categories can all wave types (transverse, longitudinal, or surface waves) be classified as?
Mechanical or electromagnetic.
How would you best describe a light wave? Is it transverse or longitudinal? Mechanical or electromagnetic? What two fields make up a light wave?

It is a transverse electromagnetic wave consisting of an oscillating electric and magnetic field.
What two fields make up a light wave?
An electric and magnetic field.
What is the definition of a MECHANICAL WAVE?
A wave that requires a medium through which to move.
What is the definition of a SURFACE WAVE?
A wave that is a combination of a transverse and longitudinal wave.
Is a sound wave a transverse wave or a longitudinal wave?
longitudinal wave
What is the definition of a COMPRESSION?
The section of a longitudinal (compressional) wave where the particles are pressed close together.
What is the definition of AMPLITUDE?
The maximum distance the particles of a medium carrying the wave move away from their resting positions.
What is the definition of a TROUGH?
The lowest point on a transverse wave.
Is a sound wave a mechanical wave or an electromagnetic wave?
mechanical wave
What three classifications of waves describe how they move?
Transverse, longitudinal (compressional), and surface (combination) waves.
What three parts make up a longitudinal wave?
Areas of compression, rarefaction, and nodes.
What is the definition of a RAREFACTION?
The section of a longitudinal (compressional) wave where the particles are expanded or spread out.
What is the definition of an ELECTROMAGNETIC WAVE?
A wave that can travel through empty space (a vacuum).
What is another name for a surface wave?
Combination wave.
What is the definition of a MEDIUM?
A substance through which a wave travels. It can be a solid, liquid, or gas.
What is the definition of a LONGITUDINAL WAVE?
A wave that moves the particles of the medium parallel to the direction in which the waves are traveling.
How are waves created?
When a source of energy causes a medium to vibrate.
What is the definition of a CREST?
The highest point on a transverse wave.
What is the definition of WAVE FREQUENCY?
The number of complete waves that pass a given point in a certain amount of time or the number of vibrations per second.
What is the definition of a TRANSVERSE WAVE?
A wave that moves the medium at a right angle(perpendicular) to the direction in which the wave is traveling.
What three parts make up a transverse wave?
crest, trough, and nodes
What type of wave is a water wave?
Surface or combination wave.
What is the definition of a WAVE?
A disturbance that transfers energy from place to place.
What part of a transverse wave does a rarefaction in a longitudinal wave correspond to?
Trough
How can you find the wavelength of a transverse wave?
By MEASURING THE DISTANCE FROM CREST TO CREST OR TROUGH TO TROUGH or any other two corresponding parts of the wave except the nodal regions. If nodal regions are used, you must measure the distance between any three nodes since there are three nodes per wavelength.
What part of a transverse wave does a compression in a longitudinal wave correspond to?
Crest
How can you find the amplitude of a transverse wave?
By measuring the distance from the rest position to a crest or trough.
What are the four basic properties of waves?
Amplitude, wavelength, frequency, and speed
As waves travel through a medium, do they carry the medium itself with them? Explain.
No. Waves only create a disturbance in the medium, causing its particles to move perpendicular to the direction of the wave (transverse) or back and forth in the same direction as the wave (longitudinal). The particles of the medium do not move out of place, however, as the wave travels.
How do you find the amplitude of a longitudinal wave?
By measuring the distance from one compression to the next.
How is a Hertz defined?
As one cycle (wavelength, vibration, or revolution) per second.