Physics » Electromagnetic Waves » Production of Electromagnetic Waves

# Summarizing Production of Electromagnetic Waves

## Production of Electromagnetic Waves Summary

• Electromagnetic waves are created by oscillating charges (which radiate whenever accelerated) and have the same frequency as the oscillation.
• Since the electric and magnetic fields in most electromagnetic waves are perpendicular to the direction in which the wave moves, it is ordinarily a transverse wave.
• The strengths of the electric and magnetic parts of the wave are related by

$$\cfrac{E}{B}=\text{c},$$

which implies that the magnetic field $$B$$ is very weak relative to the electric field $$E$$.

## Glossary

### electric field

a vector quantity (E); the lines of electric force per unit charge, moving radially outward from a positive charge and in toward a negative charge

### electric field strength

the magnitude of the electric field, denoted E-field

### magnetic field

a vector quantity (B); can be used to determine the magnetic force on a moving charged particle

### magnetic field strength

the magnitude of the magnetic field, denoted B-field

### transverse wave

a wave, such as an electromagnetic wave, which oscillates perpendicular to the axis along the line of travel

### standing wave

a wave that oscillates in place, with nodes where no motion happens

### wavelength

the distance from one peak to the next in a wave

### amplitude

the height, or magnitude, of an electromagnetic wave

### frequency

the number of complete wave cycles (up-down-up) passing a given point within one second (cycles/second)

### resonant

a system that displays enhanced oscillation when subjected to a periodic disturbance of the same frequency as its natural frequency

### oscillate

to fluctuate back and forth in a steady beat

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