Electromagnetic Waves

By Cecilia Wood


Vibrating electric charges create electromagnetic waves.

Mechanical vs Electromagnetic

Trasverse, longitudinal, and surface waves are all mechanical waves. They need a medium to travel through. Electromagnetic waves can travel through any medium, even a vaccum, which has no medium. Also, electromagnetic waves have a various range of frequencies, where mechanical waves only have certain frequencies.

Radio Waves

Radio waves have the longest wavelength. Becasue of this, they have the lowest energy out of all the electromagnetic waves. Since they have the lowest energy, they have the lowest frequency.

Radio waves are used in radios, TVs, and cellphones. They occur in supernovia exposions, and they are in interstellar clouds.


Microwaves have the 2nd lowest energy, and the 2nd longest wavelength. This means they don't have a high frequency.

Microwaves are used in cooking (actual microwaves), and cellphones.

Infrared Waves

With the 3rd lowest energy, infrared waves have the 3rd longest wavelength. This means that their frequency is about average.

Infrared waves are found in night vision goggles, toasters, and grills.

Visible Light

Visible light has the 4th lowest energy and its wavelength is shorter than infrared's wavelength. Its frequencies are also about average becasue of it's wavelength. Visible light is anything we can see such as the light from flashlights, light bulbs, fireflies, or even stars.

Ultra-Violet Light

With the 3rd highest energy level, ultra-violet light has the 3rd shortest wavelength. This results in a higher frequency.

Ultra-violet light is used in fluorescence lights and it is found in sunlight. It can also be cancerous.


X-ray waves have the 2nd highest energy, a short wavelength, and they have high frequencies. These waves cannot be seen or felt.

X-rays waves are used to see breaks in bones or cracks in melding in an industrial area.

Gamma Rays

Gamma rays have the highest energy level, shortest wavelength, and they create the higest frequencies.

Gamma rays are used to cure cancer, sterilize medical tools, and kill bacteria in food. In smaller amounts, gamma rays can cause cancer.

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Electromagnetic Spectrum
The Electromagnetic Spectrum

Here are 2 videos about the electromagnetic spectrum.

Electromagnetic Spectrum Song

Here's a fun recap song about all that this bulletin board was about! Enjoy!


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