back to future two

Back to the Future II (1989)


Concept featured in film: Radio Reception and Radio Waves

Location of clip: DVD: 1:12:56 - 1:13:39


Play Flickclip Here

Summary of clip: The scene opens with Biff just having left for the Enchantment Under the Sea dance. He is driving home alone, but Marty is hiding in the back seat hoping to get a chance to get his hands on the Grey's Sports Almanac. Biff is listening to a song on the car radio but when he passes through a tunnel, the reception cuts out.

Connection of flickclip to the concept: This is a great clip to introduce radio waves and electromagnetic waves.

Suggestions to Teachers:

1. Suggested questions for students when viewing the clip:

a. What kind of waves are radio waves?

b. What are their properties?

c. What are the differences between AM and FM stations in terms of wavelength?

d. Although radio waves are better than visible light at penetrating solid materials, they can still be blocked by objects in their path (hills, buildings). However, because of diffraction, radio waves can wrap around obstacles in their way, depending on the waves wavelength. Which band (AM or FM) benefits most from such diffraction?