Standing Waves

Wave Speed

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The speed of sound in an aluminum rod is determined by measuring its frequency and the length of the rod.

Shive Wave Machine

[M | t | ★★★★]
Rods attached to metal spine; transverse wave generator shows the reflection of waves free, fixed, terminated and transition boundaries.

[In-Depth Description]

Driven Rope of Wire

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The fundamental as well as many harmonics are seen and heard on a wire driven at various frequencies.

Standing Wave on Long Spring

[M | t | ★★★]
Obtain as many harmonics as your arm can handle.

[In-Depth Description]

Vibrating String

[ M | t+ | ★★★ ]
A 1.5m length of string driven at one end and fixed at the other shows standing waves for various driving frequencies.

[In-Depth Description]

Longitudinal Standing Waves

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A vertically supported slinky is hand-driven to secure longitudinal standing waves.

Standing Wave in Metal Rod

[M | t | ★★★]
An aluminum rod, supported in the middle, rings for a long time in its longitudinal mode.

[In-Depth Description]

Standing Wave on Soap Film

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Normal modes of vibration on a soap film are acoustically excited.

Resonant Fountain Tube

[L | t+ | ★★★★]
Standing sound waves in a glass pipe are made evident by the fountains of kerosene inside the pipe.

[In-Depth Description]

Standing Waves in a Tube

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A glass tube is tuned to set up a standing wave for the particular excitation frequency.


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A corrugated plastic tube sings as it is swung about.

Bunsen Burner Glass Tubes

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White noise from hot turbulent air turns glass tubes into awesome organ pipes.

[In-Depth Description]

Chladni Plates

[S | t+ | ★★★★]
Accumulation of sand at nodes of vibrating plate reveals resonance patterns.

[In-Depth Description]

Big Chladni Plate

[L | t++ | ★★★ ]
Electromagnetically driven plate to show two dimensional modes of vibration.

[In-Depth Description]

Ring of Fire

[M | t++ | ★★★★]
deBroglie wavelength nλ=2πr shown by gas flame in a torus.

[In-Depth Description]

Ripple Tank Wave Phenomena

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Interference patterns of water waves generated by different sources at adjustable frequency.

[In-Depth Description]

Contact Us

Mailing Address: Lecture Demonstration Services, Science Center, Rm B-08A, 1 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
Campus Location: Science Center B-08A | Tel: (617) 495-5824 | Email: