Use this for questions relating to the proper use of physics terminology or nomenclature.

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2
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1answer
117 views

Fluorescence and phosphorescence

Fluorescence is where UV light is absorbed then emits visible light right? Is it that you can only see it in the dark whereas phosphorescence is where UV light is absorbed and visible light is ...
0
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1answer
30 views

Retrograde Watches [on hold]

I am not a physicist and not familiar with physics that much.I have a watch which has Retrograde motion. I have read about what is ...
0
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1answer
66 views

Definition of a meson? [closed]

I am looking for a definition of a meson that does not include the quark model. After some research I have come across this definition: A meson is a particle that is (1) believed to be ...
-3
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2answers
41 views

Gravity on other planets [closed]

Why we use the word"Earth' pull" while defining gravity when gravity also exist on other planets of solar system?
1
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0answers
26 views

Correct terminology or way to refer to the 2 “types” of ice sublimation

I'm trying to get the right terminology for various forms of phase change. I am familiar with the phase change / triple point diagram for water, and we have various terms for the transition of a ...
3
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2answers
99 views

The meaning of 'coupling'?

In quantum mechanics if two quantities $A$ and $B$ are said to be coupled what does this actually mean? I would guess that it means we have a term like $A\cdot B$ in the Hamiltonian but this is only ...
0
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3answers
56 views

Is the light emitted by a laser a 'beam' or a 'ray'? [closed]

In English, the light generated by a laser is almost always referred to in technical texts as a 'laser beam'. However, in French, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian, forms that correspond to laser beam ...
0
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1answer
51 views

What does it mean to say “internal symmetry”?

What does it mean to say "internal symmetry"? Let me try to express the way I see it, so you can have it as a starting point. There are spacetime symmetries, which are global since any Lorentz ...
3
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3answers
93 views

What is “normal” about normal frequencies and normal modes in coupled oscillations?

So, my question is what does the "normal" part mean when one talks about normal frequencies and normal modes in coupled oscillations. Does it have to do with the normal coordinates that one uses when ...
2
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0answers
32 views

What is the difference between selection efficiency and acceptance in high energy physics?

Often in papers the product of these two quantities is mentioned, but I'm not sure what exactly they mean separately. My guess would be that one of these is the fraction of the events that you are ...
3
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1answer
37 views

Can anyone please explain the meaning of vector resonances in the scenario of particle physics?

I was reading some material on Particle physics and I came across the sentence: pseudoscalar D and B meson states and the corresponding vector resonances D* and B*. What are vector resonances? ...
1
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1answer
27 views

What do the authors mean by “closing operator”?

I'm reading a paper titled "Luminescence spectra of quantum dots in microcavities II Fermions" (link). In section III, the authors introduce so-called closing operators. I don't have enough background ...
1
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1answer
28 views

How are you the special points/critical points in the Brillouin Zone pronounced? [closed]

I know that this isn't exactly physics, but I don't know where to ask. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brillouin_zone#Cubic_lattice_system_CUB.281.29.2C_BCC.281.29.2C_FCC.281.29 The critical points/...
2
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1answer
42 views

What do the terms “offline” and “online” refer to in the field of high energy physics data analysis?

The title says it - I've encountered these terms several times but have never found an explanation anywhere. An example of use is this ATLAS note. If I may hazard a guess: Data rate is high at the ...
1
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3answers
100 views

What is meant by rest in rest-mass?

As far as I know only photons are considered to have no rest-mass. In common words when it doesn't move it 'disappears'. Electrons and quarks should have a rest-mass. But are they really at rest? ...
0
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1answer
41 views

Gruchestein Effect?

I overheard that name in a conversation, but not very clearly. I can't find anything on Google, probably because of my spelling is completely wrong. Does anybody knows about an effect with a similar ...
0
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0answers
30 views

What is the significance of Dirac ortho-normality? [duplicate]

What is the significance of Dirac ortho-normality? We know for momentum eigenfunction $f(p,x)$ for eigenvalue $p$ , $$\langle f(p',x) | f(p,x)\rangle~=~ \delta(p - p') $$ I am not clear why it is ...
1
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1answer
52 views

What is an incoherent state?

I am reading through a recent paper which speaks frequently of "incoherent states" without ever defining what such a state is. I gather from the context of the paper that it has something to do with ...
0
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1answer
31 views

Ground state metric?

In kaluza-klein theory, there's a notion of a "ground state metric" after compactification. What is the meaning of the term "ground state metric"?
-3
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1answer
62 views

Why can´t we call the energy released after the annihilation of a particle and its antiparticle `pure` energy? [closed]

As a particle and its antiparticle annihilate each other a huge amount of energy is released, and no mass is left. This energy always comes in the form of force mediating particles (photons, gluons). ...
0
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0answers
30 views

Are general coordinate transformations and diffeomorphisms the same? [duplicate]

Infinitesimal diffeomorphisms $x{}^\mu \rightarrow x{}^\mu + \xi{}^\mu$ (with $\xi{}^\mu \ll 1$) change geometric objects by means of the Lie derivative, that is, $X \rightarrow X + \mathcal{L}_\xi \, ...
0
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0answers
25 views

What is the name of basis states of bulk k.p Hamiltonian?

A k.p Hamiltonian for a bulk material can be represented by 8x8 matrix in basis of $|S\uparrow\rangle$, $|S\downarrow\rangle$, $|X\uparrow\rangle$, $|Y\uparrow\rangle$, $|Z\uparrow\rangle$, $|X\...
1
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1answer
40 views

What kind of damping is this $F = -ax|x'|$?

From Applied Mathematics by Logan: A mass hanging on a spring is <...> governed by $$mx'' = -ax|x'| - kx$$ where $-ax|x'|$ is a nonlinear damping force. I looked up "nonlinear damping" ...
-2
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1answer
36 views

Do we mean with 'pure energy' the force-carrying particles? [closed]

I often read, hear and talk about pure energy. What is meant by this? Does pure energy consists of the forces between matter, or the force mediating particles, like the massless photons and gluon? I ...
6
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1answer
299 views

What is meant by the term “value” of a scalar quantum field?

During the slow roll of a scalar field, the scalar field is changing its value over time. But what is meant by the term "value" of a scalar field? Since the scalar field is quantized, I don't ...
-1
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2answers
97 views

Is electromotive force really a force? [duplicate]

As far the definition goes emf of electromotive force is basically potential difference. It even has dimensions of potential. Then why is it called a force?
0
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2answers
44 views

Gravitation and gravity

Are gravity and gravitation the same thing? Actually I have 2 teachers at my school. One of the said that gravitation is the force of attraction between any two bodies in the universe due to their ...
0
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1answer
64 views

Is there a difference between the adjoint and conjugate?

Is there a difference between the adjoint and conjugate? I have recently started some work for a quantum field theory module and I'm wondering if there is a difference between the adjoint or conjugate ...
1
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0answers
53 views

Found a weird piece of lab equipment?

My physics teacher found a weird piece of equipment in his classroom that was dated to the 70's. The item in question has no identifying marker except for "Carolina Biological". He has contacted the ...
0
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1answer
49 views

What is the difference between habitable and Goldilocks zone?

If I am right, Habitable Zone means that a planet is on such a distance from its Star which makes it good candidate for supporting some sort of life. But then what is Goldilocks zone and how is it ...
0
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3answers
55 views

EMF or terminal voltage?

I have a doubt that is: What does this statement mean: "a 6 V battery". Does this mean that the EMF of the battery is 6 V or the terminal voltage of the battery is 6 V? If the battery has internal ...
0
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3answers
51 views

What does the “moment” in the moment of force or the moment of inertia refer to? [duplicate]

According to the Merriam Webster dictionary: Moment - a very short period of time Does the word "moment" in quantities like the moment of force or moment of inertia refer to this colloquial ...
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0answers
18 views

Slowly Varying Functions for Adiabatic Invariants - The Same as Karamata's?

In section 49 (and 50) of Landau and Lifschitz's "Classical Mechanics", adiabatic invariants are discussed, which are related to functions which vary adiabatically or "slowly" with time. Admittedly ...
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0answers
15 views

Equivalent of the word “Attitude” for the other three DoFs [closed]

When discussing the physical state of a thing (e.g. a satellite), you can refer to its attitude state (which, to me, consists of its attitude and its derivatives/rates) and its.... non-attitude state (...
2
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0answers
22 views

Position, velocity, acceleration, jolt, and [duplicate]

I am familiar with the fact that $\displaystyle{\frac{dx}{dt}}=v$, $\displaystyle{\frac{dv}{dt} =a}$, and $\displaystyle{\frac{da}{dt}=J}$ where $J$ denotes the 'jolt', or jerk. Are further ...
3
votes
1answer
317 views

What is the meaning of “moment”?

What is the meaning of moment? I'm little confused about the word as there are some terms like moment of momentum, moment of mass, moment of force, etc. I want to know what exactly is meant by the ...
9
votes
2answers
299 views

What is meant by the term “completeness relation”

From my humble (physicist) mathematics training, I have a vague notion of what a Hilbert space actually is mathematically, i.e. an inner product space that is complete, with completeness in this sense ...
1
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1answer
32 views

What is the word describing the pairs: temperature and energy, chemical potential and particle number?

I keep forgetting the word describing the pairs of coupled quantities in stat. mech. e.g. inverse temperature $\beta$ and internal energy $E$ or chemical potential $\mu$ and particle number $N$. I ...
1
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1answer
19 views

Semiconductor nanostructure and heterostructure

What is the difference between compositional superlattice and doping superlattice?
0
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0answers
14 views

Inertial force of fluids [duplicate]

Reynold's number is the ratio of inertial force to viscous force.I also know the definition of inertial force.but where does a fluid get this force from?what are the factors responsible for this force?...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

What is gate symmetry?

I just read this interesting interview with Frank Wilczek and he talks a couple of times about gate symmetry, without ever defining the term. This isn't a term I've come across, and google throws up ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Difference between sudden force and impulsive force? [duplicate]

What is the difference between a sudden force which continues to act on the body, and an impulsive force? What would be respective speeds of the body just after time= 0?
1
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0answers
36 views

What is the general definition of a quench?

I've seen the term "quench" used in many different contexts. It's easy to understand the meaning when the context has a simple physical analogue, such as lowering the temperature of a system to cause ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

What is $bfr$ in this expression?

I am reading 'Fundamentals of Quantum Mechanics' by Sakir Erokoc and came across this expression in relation to transition probabilities: $$\vec p=e \langle \psi_b |bfr|\psi_a \rangle$$ Which can be ...
0
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0answers
28 views

Why are photonics fibers called band gap fiber?

Why are photonics fibers called band gap fibers? Do the photonic fibers guide light inside the band gap or outside? What creates the band structure?
-1
votes
1answer
35 views

Symbol $p^{0}$ of particle [closed]

This is a very trivial question, but I cannot seem to find the answer anywhere in a textbook or the internet. My question is, what particle is represented by this symbol? $$p^{0}$$
0
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2answers
55 views

Definition of a ray?

The typical definition of a ray and the one that I was initially taught was that a ray was a line perpendicular to the wave front. However, when reading up on birefringence it seems as though there ...
4
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1answer
213 views

Regular solution vs irregular solution

My Quantum Mechanics textbook (John S. Townsend's A Modern Approach to Quantum Mechanics) mentions regular solutions and irregular solutions. It claims that regular solutions (at the origin) to the ...
0
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0answers
28 views

What does 'fully excited' actually mean?

In statistical mechanics you often hear the phrases such as 'when the degrees of freedom are fully excited then....'. An example would be the validity of the equipartition theorem. But what is the ...
1
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1answer
33 views

Bifundamental representations [closed]

Can someone give me explicit examples (in matrix form) of bifundamental representations? Illustrative would be for instance: a) SU(3) x SU(2) b) SO(4) x U(1) c) E6 x U(1) but other you may have ready ...