Propagation Of Electromagnetic Waves

What is electromagnetic waves?

To understand the propagation of electromagnetic waves, it is important to understand what is an electromagnetic wave. Electromagnetic waves are created as a result of vibrations produced between an electric field and the magnetic field.

The propagation of electromagnetic waves through the vacuum happens at a speed of 3*108ms-1 and the propagation of electromagnetic waves through any medium happens at a speed which is less than that of the speed in the vacuum.

Modes of propagation of electromagnetic waves

The electromagnetic waves are propagated from the transmitter antenna to the receiver antenna in the following ways:

  • Ground waves: When the electromagnetic waves are propagated along the surface, the propagation is known as ground wave propagation.
  • Space waves: When the electromagnetic waves propagate from the transmitter antenna to the receiver antenna without any reflection or refraction, the propagation is known as space wave propagation.
  • Sky waves: When the electromagnetic waves are propagated through the sky and get reflected back to the earth from the ionosphere, the propagation is known as sky wave propagation.

Properties of electromagnetic waves

Following are the properties of propagation of electromagnetic waves:

  • These waves travel at the speed of light.
  • For propagation of these waves medium is not required.
  • These waves undergo interference and diffraction and can be polarized.
  • These waves do not get deflected by an electric or magnetic field.
  • These waves travel in transverse form.

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