# Tagged Questions

The result of sampling the property of a system

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### What is the shortest controllable time?

I was reading http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planck_time and noticed a reference to: http://phys.org/news192909576.html where it is stated that: 12 attoseconds is the world record for shortest ...
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### Why does a microphone membrane only measure pressure and not particle velocity?

Microphones (e.g. condenser microphone) are assumed to have a voltage output proportional to the sound pressure at the diaphragm. If the operating principle is that the voltage output is proportional ...
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### What is weak coupling of photon polarization to a pointer?

This question is refered to those who are familiar with the concept of weak measurement. In short: How can the polarization of a photon be coupled to the position of a pointer state? What is the ...
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### How to formulate collapse in polarization subspace of a photon?

I am wondering how to describe the collapse of a photon state when it is measured in the polarization degree of freedom (say by a filter which let pass just one particular polarisation). Let the free ...
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### Measuring a fluctuating quantity: Instrument error vs. uncertainty, or both?

Say I am measuring a quantity $x$ in physical system whose true value is approximately sinusoidal in time. I have an instrument to sample this quantity, for which the manufacturer gives an accuracy ...
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### Blood Viscosity

When measuring blood viscosity, the literature claims that we generally use a cone-and-plate viscometer. Why is this; is there any way to explain this mathematically in terms of the shear rate, etc? ...
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### need data-point: count rate of APD (avalanche photo-diode) for specific aperture and stellar magnitude

I hope lab / experimental physics is fair game for this web-site. If not, sorry! I'm designing a sensor system to perform specialized [astronomy and space-sciences] experiments, and need a "reality ...
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### Effect of waters changing specific gravity on objects apparent weight placed in liquid

My goal is to monitor the change in specific gravity of a liquid over a period of time. My question is: What are the appropriate formula for determining expected apparent weight of an object immersed ...
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### Error analysis and how values in references are determined

Question 1:Most science textbooks have appendixes that have a value for some physical property of some object. This includes diameter of electrons, viscosity of fluids, boiling points, etc. My ...
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### Shouldn't the Uncertainty Principle be intuitively obvious, at least when talking about the position and momentum of an object?

Please forgive me if I'm wrong, as I have no formal physics training (apart from some in high school and personal reading), but there's something about Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle that strikes ...
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### Addition according to significant digits

I have been studying about significant digits and addition rules and I can't quite digest the rules of addition completely. It states that in the answer number of decimal places will be equal to the ...
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### Significant figures vs. absolute error

On NIST Avogadro's Number, $N_A = 6.022\;141\;29 \times 10^{23} \text{ mol}^{-1}$ has 9 significant figures and a standard uncertainty of $0.000\;000\;27 \times 10^{23} \text{ mol}^{-1}$. First, can ...
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### How does laser induced fluorescence in excited atoms work?

Atomic clocks use laser induced fluorescence in order to detect excited atoms, how does this work? Apparently the clocks need to detect the states of nearly 100% of the atoms being examined. In an ...
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### Rotation speed measurment

Could anyone please explain with simply how we can measure the rotation speed of an object using the Sagnac Interferometer ?
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### Is it possible to use induction ampermeter to measure power consumption of electric water heater and dryer?

I hope this practical question is not OT and not too trivial for this forum. I am renting an apartment in a duplex with a shared water heater and dryer. Turns out, both water heater and the dryer are ...
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### Accuracy and Error of Atomic Clocks

I'm quoting a passage from my notes: The development of clocks based on atomic oscillations allowed measures of timing with accuracy on the order of $1$ part in $10^{14}$, corresponding to errors ...
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### Which is smallest distance measurement which makes sense talking about [duplicate]

This might seem a silly question, but here it goes: Of all possible values for a measure of distance, which is the smallest that makes sense talking about? I mean, I could talk about $10^{-100000}$ ...
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### How to estimate a person's mass from a sensor? [closed]

I'm trying to estimate the person's weight from some available sensors and I have an accelerometer, a gyrometer and a magnetometer. The triaxial accelerometer is fixed in a band in the person's chest,...
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### Measuring radon level

In theory what are the techniques used to measure the levels of radon in air? On which principle/law do they rely?
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### Can stress be observed directly?

Strain can be directly observed using e.g. a ruler. Can (internal) stress be directly observed?
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### Charge or Charges on the oil droplets?

Due to my poor understanding of various paper and other material provided by google on Millikan's oil drop experiment I ask the following question here. As the drops were charged by either friction ...
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### Is it feasible to measure the energy of cosmic ray muons with a consumer Digital Single Lens Reflex camera?

I have read this article SIBBERNSEN, Kendra. Catching Cosmic Rays with a DSLR. Astronomy Education Review, 2010, 9: 010111. and it talks about estimating the muon cosmic ray flux by means of a DSLR ...
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### How does QFT help with defining measurement in Quantum Mechanics?

I learned that a quantum system has an "overall state", a vector in a Hilbert space. That Hilbert space can be decomposed in a basis of "basic states". For example if in the Universe there is only a ...
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### How to measure the mass of the electron?

I've done a little bit of research and it seems Millikan was able to measure the ratio between the charge of the electron and its mass. But how can one measure one of the two constants to get the ...
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### Resampling spectral data?

I want to use the CIE CMFs (Color Matching Functions) provided here: http://www.cvrl.org/cmfs.htm With data from my spectrometer in 10 nm increments. However, the CMFs are only provided at 5 nm ...
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### Weighted average whenever a variance is 0? [closed]

So I have data for the number of times a certain event happens. Each column is a different event and each row is one trial. A sample of data would look like \begin{bmatrix} 1& 4& 7& 6&...
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### Why is the angle of a triangular prism equal to the result of the following 2 calculations? (Experiment with optical goniometer)

I know there are two ways of measuring the angle of a prism with a goniometer: let the collimator shine (monochromatic) light on 2 sides of the prism and measure the angle between the 2 reflected ...
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### Internal observers in a mathematical model

In this abstract the idea of a mathematical model having an internal observer is raised. A similar suggestion was made to me in a comment just recently. Is there a name for this methodology of ...
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### Quantum physics and object location

If I understand correctly, according to quantum physics, subatomic particles can "leap" from one location to another (for example, from a location on earth to a location on the "other side" of the ...
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### A Global Measure on a Gravitational System

I am a computer science engineer and I am trying to simulate the gravity on my computer; several objects with different masses randomly distributed in a Three-dimensional space. I would like to ...
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### Doesn't the use of a thermometer alter the temperature of the system?

If I place a mercury thermometer in hot water, heat energy will transfer from the water to the mercury inside the thermometer. Will this continue until thermal equilibrium is reached and thus the ...