A reflection occurs when a wave bounces back after hitting a barrier. All wave can be reflected.
Sound waves reflecting off a barrier are called an echo.
Waves are not always reflected when they hit a barrier. Sometimes they pass through a substance. When a wave passes through a substance, it is transmitted.
Why do waves diffract?
Diffraction is the bending of waves around a barrier or through an opening. Waves usually travel in a straight line. When a wave reaches the edge of an object or an opening in a barrier, it may curve or bend.
The amount of diffraction of a wave depends on its wavelength and the size of the barrier opening.
If the barrier or opening is larger than the wavelength of the wave, there is only a small amount of diffraction
If the barrier or opening is the same size or smaller than the wavelength of an approaching wave, the amount of diffraction is large
Why do waves refract?
Refraction is the bending of a wave as the wave passes from one medium to another. The wave changes speed as it passes from one material to the other. The change in speed causes the wavelength to change.
When light waves from the sun pass through a droplet of water in the air, the light is refracted. The different colors of light travel at different speeds through the water droplet.
Relationship between Wavelength and Energy
Two waves of the same amplitude may carry more or less energy depending on its wavelength.
The wave with a shorter wavelength carries more energy than the wave with a long wavelength.
What is the Frequency of a Wave?
The frequency of a wave is the number of waves produced in a given amount of time.
Frequency is often expressed in hertz (Hz). One hertz equals one wave per second.
What is Wave Speed?
Wave speed is the speed at which a wave travels through a medium. Wave speed is symbolized by v.
The speed of a wave is a property of the medium. Changing the medium of a wave changes its speed.