The geometry of sound rays in a wind

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Abstract:

We survey the close relationship between sound and light rays and geometry. In the case where the medium is at rest, the geometry is the classical geometry of Riemann. In the case where the medium is moving, the more general geometry known as Finsler geometry is needed. We develop these geometries ab initio, with examples, and in particular show how sound rays in a stratified atmosphere with a wind can be mapped to a problem of circles and straight lines.

Keywords: geometry; sound and light rays

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00107514.2011.563515

Affiliations: 1: Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics (DAMTP), Centre for Mathematical Sciences, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge, CB3 0WA, UK 2: Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics (DAMTP), Centre for Mathematical Sciences, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge, CB3 0WA, UK,Queens' College, Cambridge, CB3 9ET, UK

Publication date: May 1, 2011

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