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# Waves transfer energy, but where does energy go when waves interfere destructively? watch

1. lol i hate physics i just dont get this subject. If waves transfer energy, and energy cannot be created or destroyed, where does the energy go when waves interfere destructively? Am I supposed to write it becomes potential energy or something?
2. When waves interfere with one another, they create regions of destructive interference, and regions of destructive interference. Effectively, the energy 'missing' at the points of destructive interference is added at the areas of constructive interference. If you add up the energy at these points of constructive interference, you would find that energy is conserved as we'd expect.
3. (Original post by james153)
When waves interfere with one another, they create regions of destructive interference, and regions of destructive interference. Effectively, the energy 'missing' at the points of destructive interference is added at the areas of constructive interference. If you add up the energy at these points of constructive interference, you would find that energy is conserved as we'd expect.
that makes no sense
when waves get constructive interference, they aren't taking anything from where there was destructive interference. It's basically the sum of the amplitudes of the waves, so there is no 'new energy' if you like. All that energy was in both waves in the first place, it's just less spread out.
4. The energy is proportional to the square of the amplitude. Therefore if you have two waves of equal maximum amplitude, at areas of constructive interference, you have twice the amplitude, and hence 4 times the energy. This is the 'new energy' you refer to.

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