For the most part, in this section of Zona Land we will be discussing mechanical waves. Water waves and sound waves are examples of mechanical waves. Light waves are not considered mechanical waves. However, most of the mathematics and reasoning of mechanical waves applies to light waves.
A mechanical wave is a disturbance which moves through a medium.
The amplitude is the height of the wave.Amplitude:
The wavelength is the distance from one wave top, or crest, to the next.Wavelength:
The phase shift describes how far to the left or right the wave slides.Phase shift:
Adjust the sliders in the demonstration to the left. Their values get greater as they slide to the right. Notice how changing their values affects the shape of the wave drawing.
The original program on this page was a Java applet. It works much like the above application. If you would like to see this original Java applet, click the following link: