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Thread: why sound cant be polarised?

  1. #1 why sound cant be polarised? 
    Forum Senior precious's Avatar
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    light can be polarised. what makes sound different?


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  3. #2  
    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Because they are longitudinal waves and so have no "orientation". Electromagnetic waves are transverse waves.

    Longitudinal and Transverse Wave Motion


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  4. #3  
    Forum Senior precious's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Because they are longitudinal waves and so have no "orientation". Electromagnetic waves are transverse waves.

    Longitudinal and Transverse Wave Motion
    nice.

    i know we have discussed that sound speed cant be as fast as light's. but what is max speed of sound (take any type of densiest medium)
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    Thinking of densest material must be Sun, since most massive gravity close by is there.

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    The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding go out to meet it.- Thucydides
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  6. #5  
    Moderator Moderator Janus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by precious View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Because they are longitudinal waves and so have no "orientation". Electromagnetic waves are transverse waves.

    Longitudinal and Transverse Wave Motion
    nice.

    i know we have discussed that sound speed cant be as fast as light's. but what is max speed of sound (take any type of densiest medium)
    Since the speed of sound is found by:



    where P is a coefficient of stiffness

    and
    is the density,

    Increasing the density decreases the speed of sound.

    For the highest speed of sound, you want a very stiff material with as low a density as possible.

    So for instance, lead, a soft metal with a high density (11.34g/cc), has a speed of sound of 1322 m/s

    While diamond, a stiff crystal with a much lower density (2.52g/cc), has a speed of sound of 120,000m/s
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  7. #6  
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    Sound waves in a gas such as air can only be longitudinal. But if you include in the category of sound, phonons or vibrations in a crystal lattice, these can be transverse and the waves can be polarised.
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