Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2008 (2008), Article ID 359481, 14 pages
Research Article

Vanishing Waves on Closed Intervals and Propagating Short-Range Phenomena

Ghiocel Toma1 and Flavia Doboga2

1Faculty of Applied Sciences, Politechnica University, 061071 Bucharest, Romania
2Modeling and Simulation Department, ITT Industries, Washington, DC 20024, USA

Received 29 May 2008; Accepted 24 June 2008

Academic Editor: Carlo Cattani

Copyright © 2008 Ghiocel Toma and Flavia Doboga. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study presents mathematical aspects of wave equation considered on closed space intervals. It is shown that a solution of this equation can be represented by a certain superposition of traveling waves with null values for the amplitude and for the time derivatives of the resulting wave in the endpoints of this interval. Supplementary aspects connected with the possible existence of initial conditions for a secondorder differential system describing the amplitude of these localized oscillations are also studied, and requirements necessary for establishing a certain propagation direction for the wave (rejecting the possibility of reverse radiation) are also presented. Then it is shown that these aspects can be extended to a set of adjacent closed space intervals, by considering that a certain traveling wave propagating from an endpoint to the other can be defined on each space interval and a specific mathematical law (which can be approximated by a differential equation) describes the amplitude of these localized traveling waves as related to the space coordinates corresponding to the middle point of the interval. Using specific differential equations, it is shown that the existence of such propagating law for the amplitude of localized oscillations can generate periodical patterns and can explain fracture phenomena inside materials as well.