[Antennaware] Speed

Guy Olinger, K2AV olinger at bellsouth.net
Sun Nov 13 15:33:38 EST 2005

Without perhaps explaining underlying principles in quantum mechanics, 
the same thing happens with sound waves and light waves, and tsunami 
waves, for that matter.

You may be attempting to equate radio propagation speed with the 
behavior of mass, energy and speed of objects. In the case of an 
object, the only way to slow it down is to remove energy. If the 
removal is dissipative (like car brakes) then you ask, where did it 
get the energy to speed up.

The problem is that propagation of radio is not outward movement of 
particles. The atoms in the wire of either antenna remain in their 
respective wires, the collection of electrons involved in the current 
remains local.

The speed in the coax has to do with how quickly a change in the 
charge state of one atom can induce the same change in the atom next 
to it, in the context of whatever influence exerted by surrounding 

If I recall this correctly, the speed of propagation down a one atom 
thick wire in space is right at c.

Where the electrons are emitted into space (as in a vacuum tube), 
their speed does vary according to pull on them (positive voltage on 
plate anode) or push on them (negative voltage on control grid). In 
this case your mental image works as we are talking about force acting 
upon the mass, however slight, of an electron literally moving across 

73, Guy

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Alexandru" <alexander at sandlabs.com>
To: <antennaware at contesting.com>
Sent: Saturday, November 12, 2005 9:40 AM
Subject: [Antennaware] Speed

I have this nagging question that begs to be answered :)

If the Radio Waves are traveling at, say 66% of c, in my feeder how 
they are accelerating
to about c once they leaving the antennae ? Where is the added energy
coming from?

Goggling for this has not given any satisfactory answers :(

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