Thu February 24, 2011 By: Padmini Kommu

Describe an exp. to demonstrate that light is a transverse wave motion.

Expert Reply
Sun February 27, 2011
Dear student,

Transverse waves

Up-and-down motion creates transverse waves

Wave in ballgame

At the ballgame, someone in the stands may start up a "wave" by standing up and then sitting down. The people on one side then stand up and sit down, then the next people, and so one.

Everyone is still in their seats, but the wave traveled through the ballpark from one end to the other.

Rope or string

You can shake a rope, causing a wave motion. The parts of the rope only move up-and-down, but the wave moves from one end of the rope to the other. A guitar string also has this type of motion.

Vibrating string demonstrates waveform

Light waves

Light or electromagnetic waves are caused by a up-and-down motion of electric and magnetic fields, thus making them transverse waves.

Hope this helps.
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