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published by the PhET
This interactive simulation allows users to explore the properties of waves. Wave sources and mediums are provided for water, sound, and light so users can compare the behavior of different types of waves. Options include a stopwatch and ruler to measure the waves directly, along with moveable detectors and customizable slit widths and spacings to allow users to watch the interference patterns over time. All three options, water, sound, and light, allow users to select between one and two sources, and up to two slits.

This simulation is part of a large and growing collection. It has been designed using principles from physics education research and refined based on student interviews.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education Practices
- Technology
= Multimedia
- Interference
= Interference From Two Sources
Oscillations & Waves
- Wave Motion
= Interference and Diffraction
= Interference and Diffraction of Sound
Quantum Physics
- Probability, Waves, and Interference
- Lower Undergraduate
- High School
- Informal Education
- Instructional Material
= Interactive Simulation
- Audio/Visual
= Movie/Animation
Intended Users Formats Ratings
- Learners
- Educators
- application/javascript
  • Currently 4.0/5

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Access Rights:
Free access
© 2005 PHET and University of Colorado
Additional information is available.
double slit, interference pattern, light, single slit, sound, water
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created October 22, 2006 by Gifford Weber
Record Updated:
November 10, 2021 by Bruce Mason
Last Update
when Cataloged:
August 11, 2006
Other Collections:

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Record Link
AIP Format
, Version 1.01 (PhET, Boulder, 2005), WWW Document, (
PhET Simulation: Wave Interference, Version 1.01 (PhET, Boulder, 2005), <>.
APA Format
PhET Simulation: Wave Interference. (2006, August 11). Retrieved June 16, 2024, from PhET:
Chicago Format
PhET. PhET Simulation: Wave Interference. Boulder: PhET, August 11, 2006. (accessed 16 June 2024).
MLA Format
PhET Simulation: Wave Interference. Vers. 1.01. Boulder: PhET, 2005. 11 Aug. 2006. 16 June 2024 <>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Title = {PhET Simulation: Wave Interference}, Publisher = {PhET}, Volume = {2024}, Number = {16 June 2024}, Month = {August 11, 2006}, Year = {2005} }
Refer Export Format

%T PhET Simulation: Wave Interference %D August 11, 2006 %I PhET %C Boulder %U %O 1.01 %O application/javascript

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source %D August 11, 2006 %T PhET Simulation: Wave Interference %I PhET %V 2024 %N 16 June 2024 %7 1.01 %8 August 11, 2006 %9 application/javascript %U

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Citation Source Information

The AIP Style presented is based on information from the AIP Style Manual.

The APA Style presented is based on information from APA Electronic References.

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PhET Simulation: Wave Interference:

Is Supplemented By PhET Teacher Ideas & Activities: Wave Unit

A complete unit of instruction on the topic of Waves, created by a high school teacher.  It was designed to be used with interactive simulations developed by PhET.

relation by Caroline Hall
Is Supplemented By PhET Teacher Ideas & Activities: Wave Demonstrations: Water, Sound, Light

A set of inquiry-based classroom demonstrations for high school physics, developed for use with the PhET simulation "Wave Interference".

relation by Caroline Hall

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