Table of Contents

- 1 What is the relationship between various electromagnetic waves?
- 2 What are the relationship between wavelength and frequency?
- 3 What is the relationship between frequency and energy carried by each photon of EM waves?
- 4 What is the fundamental relationship for electromagnetic waves?
- 5 What is the relationship between waveforms of two different wavelengths?

## What is the relationship between various electromagnetic waves?

Wavelength and frequency are inversely proportional to each other: wavelength × frequency = constant. Their product is equal to the velocity (λf = c). This relation is true of all kinds of wave motion, including sound, although for sound the velocity is about a million times less.

**How do EM waves differ from each other?**

They only differ from each other in wavelength. Wavelength is the distance between one wave crest to the next. Waves in the electromagnetic spectrum vary in size from very long radio waves the size of buildings, to very short gamma-rays smaller than the size of the nucleus of an atom.

### What are the relationship between wavelength and frequency?

Frequency and wavelength are inversely proportional to each other. The wave with the greatest frequency has the shortest wavelength. Twice the frequency means one-half the wavelength. For this reason, the wavelength ratio is the inverse of the frequency ratio.

**What can you observe between the wavelength and frequency of each EM wave?**

As a wavelength increases in size, its frequency and energy (E) decrease. From these equations you may realize that as the frequency increases, the wavelength gets shorter. As the frequency decreases, the wavelength gets longer. There are two basic types of waves: mechanical and electromagnetic.

## What is the relationship between frequency and energy carried by each photon of EM waves?

The energy of a photon is directly proportional to the frequency of the radiation, with a constant of proportionality called Planck’s constant. That is, E = hν, where h = 6.626 × 10−34 J/s and the energy is in Joules.

**What relationship do the EM waves have in terms of wavelength and energy?**

Just as wavelength and frequency are related to light, they are also related to energy. The shorter the wavelengths and higher the frequency corresponds with greater energy. So the longer the wavelengths and lower the frequency results in lower energy. The energy equation is E = hν.

### What is the fundamental relationship for electromagnetic waves?

The fundamental relationship for EM waves is frequency × wavelength = speed, or νλ= c The latter relationship follows from a similar equation above that holds for all traveling waves. Below is an illustration of the entire EM spectrum.

**Is EM radiation made up of waves?**

Light and other forms of EM radiation show diffraction, which is a result of interference, and this is evidence that EM radiation is made up of waves. In-phase waveforms are shown adding together constructively, and out-of-phase waveforms canceling.

## What is the relationship between waveforms of two different wavelengths?

The figure shows waveforms of two different wavelengths – the lower wave has a shorter wavelength than the top wave. If both waves are traveling at the same speed, then in observing the bottom wave from a fixed point, we would see more peaks passing us per unit time than if we were watching the top wave.

**What are the characteristics of a wave?**

Waves show a repetitive or periodic form. Waves do not have mass, but they do carry energy, and they are able to propagate – that is, travel – though some medium. All propagating (traveling) waves have four basic characteristics: speed, frequency, wavelength, and amplitude.