We think you are located in United States. Is this correct?

Chapter summary

Practise now to improve your marks

You can do it! Let us help you to study smarter to achieve your goals. Siyavula Practice guides you at your own pace when you do questions online.

Sign up to improve your marks

Chapter summary

Presentation: VPguj

  • A wave is formed when a continuous number of pulses are transmitted through a medium.

  • A crest is the highest point a particle in the medium rises to.

  • A trough is the lowest point a particle in the medium sinks to.

  • In a transverse wave, the particles move perpendicular to the motion of the wave.

  • The amplitude (\(A\)) is the maximum distance from equilibrium position to a crest (or trough), or the maximum displacement of a particle in a wave from its position of rest.

  • The wavelength (\(λ\)) is the distance between any two adjacent points on a wave that are in phase. It is measured in metres (\(\text{m}\)).

  • The period (\(T\)) of a wave is the time it takes a wavelength to pass a fixed point. It is measured in seconds (\(\text{s}\)).

  • The frequency (\(f\)) of a wave is how many waves pass a point in a second. It is measured in hertz (\(\text{Hz}\)) or \(\text{s$^{-1}$}\).

  • Frequency: \(f = \frac{1}{T}\)

  • Period: \(T = \frac{1}{f}\)

  • Speed: \(v = f·λ\) or \(v = \frac{λ}{T}\).

Physical Quantities
QuantityUnit nameUnit symbol
Amplitude (\(A\))metre\(\text{m}\)
Wavelength (\(λ\))metre\(\text{m}\)
Period (\(T\))second\(\text{s}\)
Frequency (\(f\))hertzHz (\(\text{s$^{-1}$}\))
Wave speed (\(v\))metre per second\(\text{m·s$^{-1}$}\)

Table 8.1: Units used in transverse waves