Jul 9, 2009
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I understand that an increase in the number of harmonic leads to an increased frequency and decreased wavelength. But is a harmonic defined as a specific wave?

For example, is the first harmonic one full wave or a 1/2 a wave? Is the second harmonic a 1 full wave or 2 full waves? BR illustrates them as an increase in harmonic = increase by 1/2 a wave, but a passage on AAMC #3 defined it the other way...
 

knightstale4

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I understand that an increase in the number of harmonic leads to an increased frequency and decreased wavelength. But is a harmonic defined as a specific wave?

For example, is the first harmonic one full wave or a 1/2 a wave? Is the second harmonic a 1 full wave or 2 full waves? BR illustrates them as an increase in harmonic = increase by 1/2 a wave, but a passage on AAMC #3 defined it the other way...
It increases by (1/2)lambda, but the first harmonic value, which is a frequency, depends on whether the pipe is open or closed. If closed, you start with (1/4)lamda, and increase by (1/2)lamda to find the successive frequencies. If open, you start with (1/2)lamda, and increase by (1/2)lamda to find the successive frequencies.

The easiest way to remember this is to just draw a closed and open pipe, and see how many loops you can fit in. One loop is 1/2 wavelength. The open end is where there is an anti-node, and the closed end is where there is a node.
 
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