Electromagnetic spectrum

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a way of transferring energy without particles moving along the route.


longitudinal wave

a backwards and forwards moving wave. eg; sound


transverse wave

up and down moving wave eg; light



how many waves that pass a point in 1 second (Hz)
frequency = speed/ wavelength
(sound frequency= pitch)
(light frequency= colour)



the length of a wave from the middle of crest to crest of a wave.
wavelength = speed/frequency



the height of the wave from the middle to the crest or middle to trough. (sound amplitude= volume)
(light wave amplitude= brightness)


electromagnetic spectrum

is a continuous range of wavelengths with different uses and dangers, which can depend on their wavelength and frequency.


radio wave

wave length: 1m-10km
frequency: 30kHz-300MHz
uses: for the radio, television signals, communicating around the Earth using satellites.
dangers: none



wave length: 100mm
frequency: 3.0 GHz
uses: heating food, satellite communication, radar and mobile phones.
dangers: heating effects is believed to be dangerous to living cells.


infrared wave

wave length: 2.5 um-1mm
frequency: 300 GHz-120 THz
uses: heat, remote controls, optical fibre communication
dangers: heating effect on living cells


visible light wave

wave length: 780nm
frequency: 384 THz
uses: light, morse code, communication, seeing things.
dangers: damages retina


ultra-violet wave

wave length: 200nm-380nm
frequency: 789 THz-1.5 PHz
uses: helps produce vitamin D, kill bacteria, hair salon, air con, tanning beds
dangers: too much can cause sun tan, sun burn, or various skin cancers.


x-ray wave

wave length: 10nm
frequency: 30.0 PHz
uses: to scan the body for broken bones, detect metal, detect damage in metal.
dangers: small doses can cause cells to become cancerous


gamma rays

wave length: 10 pm
frequency: 30.0 EHz
uses: form of nuclear energy, destroy cancer cells, sterilisation of hospital equipment, kill bacteria in food.
dangers: kills living cells.

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