Three Solutions for the Simple Harmonic Oscillator

Rhett Allain
8 min readApr 26, 2022
Photo: Rhett Allain. Harmonic Oscillator

Let’s be honest — the world is made of springs. OK, maybe they aren’t literally springs but they are approximately springs. Yes, for small oscillations we can approximate stuff as a simple harmonic oscillator.

The Physics Problem

Suppose you have a mass (m) connected to a spring and the mass can ONLY move in the x-direction and the spring is the only…

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Rhett Allain

Physics faculty, science blogger of all things geek. Technical Consultant for CBS MacGyver and MythBusters. WIRED blogger.