# Engineering Physics Questions and Answers – Waves

This set of Engineering Physics Multiple Choice Questions & Answers (MCQs) focuses on “Waves”.

1. When a pebble is dropped into a pond of still water, what happens?
a) Particles move
b) Waves move
c) The pebble moves
d) Water moves

Explanation: When a pebble is thrown in still water, a circular pattern of alternate crests spread out. The kinetic energy makes the particles to oscillate which comes in contact with it. The energy gets transferred to the particles of the next layer which also begins to oscillate. Thus it is the disturbance or waves that move forward and not the particles of the medium.

2. Mechanical waves are called elastic waves.
a) True
b) False

Explanation: Waves which require a medium for their propagation are called mechanical waves. They are also called elastic waves because they depend on the elastic properties of a medium.

3. What are the essential properties a medium must possess for the propagation of mechanical waves?
a) Stable pressure
b) Maximum friction
c) Constant temperature
d) Minimum friction

Explanation: The friction force amongst the particles of the medium should be negligibly small so that they continue oscillating for a sufficiently long time and the wave travels a sufficiently long distance through the medium

4. Transverse waves can be formed in fluids.
a) True
b) False

Explanation: Transverse waves travel in the form of crests and troughs. They involve changes in the shape of the medium. So they can be transmitted through media which have rigidity. As fluids do not sustain shearing stress, transverse waves cannot be formed in them.

5. Which of the following waves can be transmitted through solids, liquids and gases?
a) Transverse waves
b) Electromagnetic waves
c) Mechanical waves
d) Longitudinal waves

Explanation: Longitudinal waves involve changes in the volume and density of the medium. Since all media can sustain compressive stress, longitudinal waves can be transmitted through all the three types of media.
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6. For an aluminium the modulus of rigidity is 2.1×1010 N/m2 and density is 2.7×103 kg/m3. Find the speed of transverse waves in the medium.
a) 27.9×103 m/s
b) 2.79×103 m/s
c) 25.14×103 m/s
d) 24.1×103 m/s

Explanation: Speed = √(Ƞ/ƿ)
Speed = 2.79×103 m/s.

7. Sound travels through a gas under which of the following condition?
a) Isothermal condition
b) Non-isothermal condition
d) Transverse condition

Explanation: The compressions and rarefactions are formed so rapidly that the heat generated in the regions of compressions does not get time to pass into the regions of rarefactions so as to equalize the temperature. So when sound travels through gas, the temperature remains constant. Therefore, it is adiabatic.

8. What kind of wave is formed in organ pipes?
a) Transverse stationary waves
b) Electromagnetic waves
c) Mechanical waves
d) Longitudinal stationary waves

Explanation: When two identical longitudinal waves travelling in opposite directions overlap, a longitudinal stationary wave is formed. Thus, the waves produced in organ pipes are longitudinal stationary waves.

9. A wave transmits momentum. Can’t it transfer angular momentum?
a) Yes
b) No

Explanation: A wave transmitting momentum cannot transmit angular momentum because a transfer of angular momentum means the action of a torque which causes rotator motion.

10. What is the most fundamental property of wave?
a) Temperature
b) Pressure
c) Frequency
d) Wavelength

Explanation: When a wave travels from one medium to other, its wavelength as well as velocity may change. This is the reason that frequency is the fundamental property of a wave.

11. Which of the following is also known as pressure waves?
a) Transverse waves
b) Longitudinal waves
c) Mechanical waves
d) Stationary waves

Explanation: Longitudinal waves travel in a medium as series of alternate compressions and rarefactions and hence are called pressure waves.

12. In which medium sound travels faster?
a) Solid
b) Liquid
c) Gas
d) Water vapour

Explanation: Sound travels in solid with the highest speed because the coefficient of elasticity of solids is much greater than the coefficient of elasticity of liquids and gases.

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