What is a light wave?

Light is a disturbance of electric and magnetic fields that travels in the form of a wave. Imagine throwing a pebble into a still pond and watching the circular ripples moving outward. Like those ripples, each light wave has a series of high points known as crests, where the electric field is highest, and a series of low points known as troughs, where the electric field is lowest. The wavelength is the distance between two wave crests, which is the same as the distance between two troughs. The number of wave crests that pass through a given point in one second is called the frequency, measured in units of cycles per second called Hertz. The speed of the light wave equals the frequency times the wavelength.

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