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THE MUSIC

FRANKLIN'S SCIENTIFIC STYLE

HISTORY IN PERSPECTIVE

 

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Sound Waves

What do they look like?

You can see a picture of a sound wave on the screen of a device called an oscilloscope.

Look at the diagram below. The compressions, in which particles are crowded together, appear as upward curves in the line. The rarefactions, in which particles are spread apart,
appear as downward curves in the line.

Three characteristics are used to describe a sound wave. These are wavelength, frequency, and amplitude.

  • Wavelength; this is the distance from the crest of one wave to the crest of the next.
  • Frequency; this is the number of waves that pass a point in each second.
  • Amplitude; this is the measure of the amount of energy in a sound wave.

 Pitch

This is how a high and a low soundwave looks.

A bird makes a high pitch.
A lion makes a low pitch.

Can you think of other high and low sounds?

 
 

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