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written by Paul Falstad
This applet simulates a circular membrane which can be 'poked' or 'struck' with the mouse. Normal modes, one or several, can be selected. The membrane can be viewed in 2-D or 3-D, with color or without, solid or wireframe. Simulation speed, damping and base frequency for sound are adjustable.  The sound version of the applet only works in Windows and with Microsoft Java VM. A second applet is available for Netscape/Sun Java.

Please note that this resource requires at most version Microsoft VM for sound of Java.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Oscillations & Waves
- Oscillations
- Wave Motion
- Lower Undergraduate
- High School
- Graduate/Professional
- Upper Undergraduate
- Instructional Material
= Interactive Simulation
= Tutorial
Intended Users Formats Ratings
- Learners
- application/java
- application/zip
- text/html
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Access Rights:
Free access
The source code is available.
circular membrane, drumhead, normal modes, vibrational modes
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created June 17, 2004 by Melanie Carter
Record Updated:
April 9, 2005 by Melanie Carter
ComPADRE is beta testing Citation Styles!

Record Link
AIP Format
P. Falstad, , WWW Document, (
P. Falstad, Circular Membrane Applet, <>.
APA Format
Falstad, P. (n.d.). Circular Membrane Applet. Retrieved November 29, 2023, from
Chicago Format
Falstad, Paul. Circular Membrane Applet. (accessed 29 November 2023).
MLA Format
Falstad, Paul. Circular Membrane Applet. 29 Nov. 2023 <>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Paul Falstad", Title = {Circular Membrane Applet}, Volume = {2023}, Number = {29 November 2023}, Year = {} }
Refer Export Format

%A Paul Falstad %T Circular Membrane Applet %U %O application/java

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source %A Falstad, Paul %T Circular Membrane Applet %V 2023 %N 29 November 2023 %9 application/java %U

Disclaimer: ComPADRE offers citation styles as a guide only. We cannot offer interpretations about citations as this is an automated procedure. Please refer to the style manuals in the Citation Source Information area for clarifications.

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.

The Chicago Style presented is based on information from Examples of Chicago-Style Documentation.

The MLA Style presented is based on information from the MLA FAQ.

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