Absorption and Reflection

Absorption and Reflection
An example of reflection.

Reflection happens when a wave bounces off a boundary between two materials. One example of reflection is the image above below ⬇⬇⬇.

Breathtaking Snow-Capped Mountain with Reflection on Lake with Fog

The light wave in this image is reflected in the water. When sound waves are reflected, they form what is called an echo.

Absorption happens when a wave loses energy as it goes through a material. This can happen in a medium or at the boundary between two materials.

When a wave is absorbed by a material, its energy turns into a different type of energy, such as thermal or electric. One example of absorption is when light waves if concentrated on a spot can begin a fire.

When absorbed, sound waves cannot be heard anymore. This can happen when you shout in a sound-proof room used for recordings.