National Science Digital Library

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Wave on a String

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Mathematics and Statistics, Science and Technology, Chemistry, Computing and Information, Geoscience, Physics, Education
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository, PheT, University of Colorado Boulder
Provider Set:
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository, PhET Interactive Simulations, PhET Interactive Simulations
Upper Primary, Middle School, High School, Community College / Lower Division, College / Upper Division, Career / Technical, Adult Education
English, Arabic, Basque, Cambodian, Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Estonian, Finnish, French, Georgian, German, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Macedonian, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish, Vietnamese
Material Type:
Activities and Labs, Images and Illustrations, Instructional Material, Interactive, Lesson Plans, Reference, Simulations
Media Format:
Interactive, Text/HTML
Technical requirements:
AMSER: Applied Math and Science Education Repository Abstract:

This website contains a Flash applet which simulates the motion of a vibrating string as well as ideas for activities involving this simulation. The end of the string can be moved using the mouse or driven by an oscillator to set up traveling or standing waves. The string is modeled as a series of interacting masses. The tension of the string, damping, and frequency and amplitude of the oscillator can be adjusted. Measurements can be made with rulers and a stop watch. This item is part of a larger collection of simulations developed by the Physics Education Technology project (PhET). The simulations are animated, interactive, and game-like environments in which students learn through exploration.

PheT Abstract:

Watch a string vibrate in slow motion. Wiggle the end of the string and make waves, or adjust the frequency and amplitude of an oscillator. Adjust the damping and tension. The end can be fixed, loose, or open.