Waves

What is a Wave?

When waves move through a substance, they only move the
particles of the substance backwards and forwards (longitudinal)
or side to side (transverse) as the wave passes.
After the wave has gone, the particles of the substance are
back where they started but energy has been carried by the wave
from its origin (where it begins) to its destination (where it finishes).

One type of wave (an electromagnetic wave) does not need
any substance to get from its origin to its destination.
It can travel through a vacuum (nothing).
Electromagnetic waves can travel from
stars to planets through empty space (space is a vacuum).


What does a Wave do?

Waves transmit energy without transmitting matter.

This means that waves can move energy (or information)
from one place to another without moving any
substance (stuff) from one place to another. The amount
of energy that a wave has depends on its amplitude.

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