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# Physics 71 Lecture Notes

## Topic 4.03: Doppler Effect

Doppler Effect
The apparent change in the frequency of sound due to
the relative motion of the source and the listener.
v+v L vL : Velocity of the listener (L)
f L= fS
v +v S vS : Velocity of the source (S)
v: Speed of sound
fL fS f L: Frequency heard by the listener (L)
=
v +v L v+v S f S: Frequency emitted by the source (S)

## This will hold for all cases.

Note: The sign of vL and vS depends on our positive sense of
direction
The sign of v (speed of sound) is always positive.
We will set the from listener (L) to source (S) as our
positive direction.
Examples:
A police cars siren emits a sinusoidal wave with fs = 300 [Hz] frequency. The
speed of sound is 340 [m/s] and the air is still. If a listener L is at rest and the
siren is moving away from L at 30 [m/s], what frequency does the listener hear?

fL fS fL 300[ Hz]
= =
v +v L v+v S 340[m/ s]+(0) 340[m/ s]+(+30[m/ s])
f L=276[ Hz]
The sign of v is always positive (sound wave spreads out in all direction)
Always take note of the listener to source direction.
Velocity pointing to the listener to source direction will be given a positive
sign.
Examples:
A police cars siren emits a sinusoidal wave with fs = 300 [Hz] frequency. The
speed of sound is 340 [m/s] and the air is still. If the siren is at rest and the
listener is moving away from it at 30 [m/s], what frequency does the listener hear?

fL fS fL (300[ Hz ])
= =
340[m/ s]+(30[m/ s]) 340[m/ s]+(0)
v +v L v+v S
f L=274 [ Hz]
Examples:
A police cars siren emits a sinusoidal wave with fs = 300 [Hz] frequency.
The speed of sound is 340 [m/s] and the air is still. The siren is moving
away from the listener with a speed of 45 [m/s] relative to still air, and the
listener is moving toward the siren with a speed of 15 [m/s] relative to air.
What frequency does the listener hear?

fL fS fL (300[ Hz ])
= =
v +v L v+v S 340[m/ s]+(+15[ m/ s]) 340[m/ s]+(+45[m/ s])
f L=277[ Hz]
E6. What is the frequency heard by the listener if the
police car moves toward the listener?
Examples:
A police cars siren emits a sinusoidal wave with fs = 300 [Hz] frequency.
The speed of sound is 340 [m/s] and the air is still. The police car is
moving toward a warehouse at 30 [m/s]. What frequency does the driver
hear reflected from the warehouse?
Get first the frequency of the sound that will be reflected by the warehouse.
Treat the warehouse as the source of the reflected sound.

fW fC
=
v +v W v +v C

340[m/ s]+(0)
f W= (300[ Hz ])
340[m/ s]+(30[m/ s])
f W =329[ Hz]
Examples:
A police cars siren emits a sinusoidal wave with fs = 300 [Hz] frequency.
The speed of sound is 340 [m/s] and the air is still. The police car is
moving toward a warehouse at 30 [m/s]. What frequency does the driver
hear reflected from the warehouse?
Get first the frequency of the sound that will be reflected by the warehouse.
Treat the warehouse as the source of the reflected sound.

f W =329[ Hz]

fC fW
=
v +v C v +v W
E7. Perform the proper substitution and obtain the
frequency heard by the driver.
340[m/ s]+(+30[m/ s]) f L=358[ Hz]
f L= (329[ Hz ])
340[m/ s]+(0)
Exercises:

## A car alarm is emitting sound waves of frequency 520 [Hz].

You are on a motorcycle, traveling directly away from the
stationary car. How fast must you be traveling if you detect a
frequency of 490 [Hz]? The speed of sound in air is 344 [m/s].
f S =520 [ Hz]
f L =490 [ Hz]

fL fS
=
v +v L v+v S
v L=
( )
fL
fS
1 v v L=19.8 [m/ s]

Exercises:

## A railroad train is traveling at 30.0 [m/s] in still air. The

frequency of the note emitted by the train whistle is 262
[Hz]. What frequency is heard by a passenger on a train
moving in the opposite direction to the first at 18.0 [m/s]
and (a) approaching the first; and (b) receding from the
first? The speed of sound in air is 340 [m/s]
Exercises:

## A railroad train is traveling at 30.0 [m/s] in still air. The

frequency of the note emitted by the train whistle is 262
[Hz]. What frequency is heard by a passenger on a train
moving in the opposite direction to the first at 18.0 [m/s]
and (a) approaching the first; and (b) receding from the
first? The speed of sound in air is 340 [m/s]
(a) v =30.0[m/ s] v L=+18.0[m/ s] E9. Make a similar sketch
S

(L)
for part (b). Specify the
(S) positive direction.

## E10. Show the correct

fL fS substitution and solve for fL.
=
v +v L v+v S
f L=228[ Hz]
f L=302[ Hz ]
Doppler Effect
The apparent change in the frequency of sound due to the relative motion
of the source and the listener.
Stationary source, moving listener

## vL : Velocity of listener (L)

vS : Velocity of source (S)
v: Speed of sound in air

## Speed of sound relative to the listener

f L=
Wavelength of the incoming wave fronts

## v+v L v+v L v+v L

f L= f L= f L= fS
(v / f S ) v
Moving (S), stationary (L) : Wavelength if the source is
vS T S stationary.
vS T S : Distance traveled by the next
wave crest after one period TS.
front : Wavelength in front of a moving
source

## From the figure:

front
=v S T S + front
front =v S T S
v vS
front =
fS fS
vv S
front =
fS
Moving (S), stationary (L) : Wavelength if the source is
vS T S stationary.
vS T S : Distance traveled by the next
wave crest after one period TS.
behind : Wavelength behind a moving
source

## From the figure:

behind behind = +v S T S
v vS
behind = +
fS fS
v +v S
behind =
fS
Moving (S), moving (L) : Wavelength if the source is
vS T S stationary.
vS T S : Distance traveled by the next
wave crest after one period TS.
behind : Wavelength behind a moving
source

v +v S
behind behind =
fS
Suppose the listener moves from
behind:
Speed of sound relative to the listener
f L=
Wavelength of the incoming wave fronts

v +v L v+v L v+v L
f L= f L= f L= fS
behind (v +v S )/f S v +v S