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A fundamental result in the mathematical discussion of wave propagation is the concept known as Fermat*#x0027;s Principle. Stated for our purposes, it runs somewhat like this: The study of the propagation of waves may be reduced to the study of wave paths which are defined as the paths along which the travel-times are minimal. We proceed to expand on this subject.

Consider a moving wave front. Corresponding to it is a family of wave paths (see Lesson No.1). Choose any two points lying on anyone of these wave paths. Of all possible paths joining those two points, the wave path is that for which the travel-time is least. In other words, the travel-time along any other path (within suitable limits) joining those two points would be greater than along the wave path.

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