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Key Terms

beat frequency
frequency of beats produced by sound waves that differ in frequency
constructive and destructive interference of two or more frequencies of sound
bow wake
v-shaped disturbance created when the wave source moves faster than the wave propagation speed
Doppler effect
alteration in the observed frequency of a sound due to motion of either the source or the observer
Doppler shift
actual change in frequency due to relative motion of source and observer
the lowest-frequency resonance
the term used to refer collectively to the fundamental and its overtones
perception of sound
perception of sound intensity
basic unit of music with specific names, combined to generate tunes
all resonant frequencies higher than the fundamental
numerical unit of loudness
perception of the frequency of a sound
shock wave
wave front that is produced when a sound source moves faster than the speed of sound
sonic boom
loud noise that occurs as a shock wave as it sweeps along the ground
traveling pressure wave that may be periodic; the wave can be modeled as a pressure wave or as an oscillation of molecules
sound intensity level
unitless quantity telling you the level of the sound relative to a fixed standard
sound pressure level
ratio of the pressure amplitude to a reference pressure
number and relative intensity of multiple sound frequencies
device that converts energy of a signal into measurable energy form, for example, a microphone converts sound waves into an electrical signal
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