short waves, radio waves whose frequencies range from about 3 to 25 megahertz (Mhz), corresponding roughly to the high-frequency band (see radio frequency). When they impinge on certain layers of the ionosphere, short waves are largely reflected back toward the earth. By one or more reflections between the earth and the ionosphere, a short-wave radio signal can be received at long distances from the transmitter.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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