HW 1.39 Wavelength of baseball  [ENDORSED]

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HW 1.39 Wavelength of baseball

Postby Yinhan_Liu_1D » Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:30 pm

Hi all.
I understand how to get the answer.
But I just have a conceptual question: what does the "wavelength of the baseball" mean in reality? Is it the trajectory? Or is it the vibration?

I hope you can help me understand that.

Thank you!

Geoffrey Zhang 3I
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Re: HW 1.39 Wavelength of baseball  [ENDORSED]

Postby Geoffrey Zhang 3I » Wed Oct 05, 2016 10:18 am


The wavelength of the baseball is so miniscule that you can't see it. Basically, the baseball does move in a sin-wave type trajectory but since that value is so tiny, you can't physically see it. Hope that helps!

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Re: HW 1.39 Wavelength of baseball

Postby Chem_Mod » Wed Oct 05, 2016 11:29 am

Hey Geoffery! Your question is very good and very complex. It is beyond the scope of the class, but if you would like a simplified explanation it is below.

Now we know every particle has a wavelength, but what does that mean? In quantum mechanics, there is something called a wave function (which is a wave like sine and cosine) where if you square the wave function one obtains the probability where the particle exists. One can imagine that if the wavelength is very very tiny, then the probability is constant for a period of time. This happens for classical objects like cars and baseballs. However, for electrons, this wave function is extremely important because one can construct orbitals using them. Hope this helps!

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