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written by Edward Zobel
This item is an interactive Java simulation that models the addition and subtraction of waves.  It was developed by a high school teacher to help beginning students visualize exactly what is happening when waves pass through each other, or "interfere".   Students set amplitude, frequency, and phase shift of two waves, then push the "Add" button to see the wave addition on a coordinate plane.  The student may select either addition or subtraction and may opt for either sine or cosine functions.  

SEE RELATED ITEMS ON THIS PAGE for a link to the full set of Zona Land Waves tutorials.

Please note that this resource requires Java.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Oscillations & Waves
- Wave Motion
= Interference and Diffraction
= Transverse Pulses and Waves
- High School
- Informal Education
- Instructional Material
= Activity
= Interactive Simulation
= Model
= Tutorial
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Physical Science
- Physics First
- Conceptual Physics
- Algebra-based Physics
- AP Physics
- Activity
- New teachers
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Free access
© 1999 Edward A. Zobel
collection, interactive simulation, simulation, wave addition, wave interference, wave simulation, wave subtraction, waves
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created March 22, 2009 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
December 9, 2014 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
January 16, 2008
Other Collections:

This resource is part of a Physics Front Topical Unit.

Topic: Wave Energy
Unit Title: How Waves Move and Interact: Reflection, Refraction, Interference

When two waves interfere, their amplitudes add.  This interactive Java applet was developed by a high school teacher to help students visualize exactly what is happening to the amplitude of two waves as they pass through each other.  Students set the frequency, amplitude, and phase shift of two waves, then click "Add" to see a graph of the sum.  Students may choose either addition or subtraction, sine or cosine.

Link to Unit:
ComPADRE is beta testing Citation Styles!

Record Link
AIP Format
E. Zobel, (1999), WWW Document, (
E. Zobel, Zona Land: Wave Adder, (1999), <>.
APA Format
Zobel, E. (2008, January 16). Zona Land: Wave Adder. Retrieved July 28, 2016, from
Chicago Format
Zobel, Edward. Zona Land: Wave Adder. January 16, 2008. (accessed 28 July 2016).
MLA Format
Zobel, Edward. Zona Land: Wave Adder. 1999. 16 Jan. 2008. 28 July 2016 <>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Edward Zobel", Title = {Zona Land: Wave Adder}, Volume = {2016}, Number = {28 July 2016}, Month = {January 16, 2008}, Year = {1999} }
Refer Export Format

%A Edward Zobel
%T Zona Land:  Wave Adder
%D January 16, 2008
%O application/java

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Zobel, Edward
%D January 16, 2008
%T Zona Land:  Wave Adder
%V 2016
%N 28 July 2016
%8 January 16, 2008
%9 application/java

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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.

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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Zona Land: Wave Adder:

Is Part Of Zona Land: Waves

This is a link to the full set of Zona Land tutorials on wave properties and phenomena.

relation by Caroline Hall

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