Units are standards of measurement used for different types of quantities.

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What does the $c$ in $eV/c^2$ stand for?

I have been wondering(also searching) for what does the $c$ in eV/$c^2$ stand for? (For example, mass of the electron is $0.511 \, \text{MeV}/c^2$.) I have read that this unit has been derived from ...
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2answers
123 views

How do we deal with irrationals in Physics? [duplicate]

This question is really very basic: how do we deal with irrationals in Physics? If for instance, in some meaningful calculation we get a length of $\pi$ meters, or a force of $\pi$ Newtons, how should ...
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110 views

Should I always include units at every step?

I've seen some controversy when solving physical equations on whether to put units all the time after I insert a numerical value to a variable with dimensions or to put the final unit at the last ...
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1answer
111 views

How to pronounce $\textrm{eV}\!/c^2$

It seems that $\textrm{eV}\!/c^2$ (and its multiples) is commonly used as the unit of mass in particle physics. For example, David Griffiths uses it quite naturally in Introduction to Elementary ...
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127 views

Why do we set $x^0 = ct$ instead of $x^0 = t$?

When we deal with Special Relativity and we start considering spacetime instead of space and time each at once, we usually see books saying that we consider a space with four coordinate $x^\alpha$ ...
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267 views

Functional derivative and units

The both sides of below equation don't give the same units, e.g. $$ \frac{\delta}{\delta \phi (\tau)}\int_a^b \phi (\tau') d\tau'=1\;. $$ where $a<\tau<b$. To show this assume that the field ...
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How to recover units?

Theorists frequently use convenient units like $\hbar=1$ or $m=2$ or whatever is useful to simplify the notation in the problem. And after all the calculations are done the units are recovered based ...
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Energy definition in special relativity

I'm going through the early homework assignments for my special relativity course and I've got myself a little confused about energy. I've got a basic understanding of what the 4-momentum is, having ...
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322 views

Newton's Law of Graviation: Why $G$ and not e.g. $\dfrac{1}{4\pi G_0}$?

I've been wondering, in Coulomb's Law, $k_e = \dfrac{1}{4\pi\epsilon_0}$. Therefore, why do we use $G$ in Newton's Law of Gravitation? What if the constant is more like Coulomb's Law, e.g. $G = ...
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Are circularly defined {velocity, distance, and time} a problem in physics?

In order to measure velocity, one needs a calibrated measuring stick and clock. But in order to calibrate a measuring stick you need a calibrated clock and velocity. And in order to calibrate a clock ...
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Question about units of mass, $M = (L^{3})(T^{-2})$?

In section 5 of the "Preliminary: On the measurement of quantities" chapter (page 3) in "A treatise on electricity and magnetism" Maxwell uses, total length, $s=mt^{2}/{2r^{2}}$to show that ...
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What widely recognized organizations set standards used by physics?

I recently answered a question about the meaning of the word "dimension" as used in physics. In that response, I provided the definition given in the International Vocabulary of Metrology (VIM) and ...
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759 views

Fundamental units

Is it right that all units in physics can be defined in terms of only mass, length and time? Why is it so? Is there some principle that explains it or is it just observational fact?
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Units and Dimensions - Use of proportionality constant

In units and dimensions we learn about Establishing a Formula : (example) : to establish a relationship between T (Time Period) , m (Mass) , l (length of the string) and g(acc. due to gravity) - ...
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Confused about unit of kilowatt hours

So I am a little confused on how to deal with the Kilowatt hours unit of power, I have only ever used Kilowatts and I have to design a residential fuel cell used as a backup generator for one day. ...
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516 views

Planck time, distance, mass? Why do we take those values?

Say we want to make an educated guess for critical values of time, distance and mass, where quantum gravity effects are supposed to be non-negligible. These values are given the prefix "Planck-". Now, ...
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764 views

What is the real interpretation of Planck's constant and what are its origins?

In the physics texts I have read and from other online information, I gather that Planck's constant is the quantum of action or that it is a constant specifying the ratio of the energy of a particle ...
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How to interpret the appearance of time units in the units of a physical quantity?

Or phrased more abstractly, how to interpret the appearance of time dimension $[time]$ in the dimension of a physical quantity? For example, the dimension of pressure is $[mass] [length]^{-1} ...
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810 views

Question Concerning Dimensional Analysis

In the first lecture of MIT's Classical Mechanics Professor Lewin talks about Dimensional Analysis.He talks about an apple being dropped from a certain height can be quantitatively expressed as the ...
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38 views

Spectral irradiance units conversion

I have a table of data containing irradiance of light at different wavelengths. This is how it looks like for 300.5 nm: Wavelength, nm: 300.5 Wavelength, $\mu$m: 0.3005 W/m$^2$/$\mu$m: 403 ...
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83 views

Units of Hubble Time and Hubble Constant?

When we have Hubble constant and it's inverse Hubble Time (1/H) what units are they measured in? I know Hubble constant is in "km/s per Mpc" but is there any other units which are popular used with ...
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Is dimensional analysis always sufficient to establish equivalence of quantities?

In dealing with the Biot-Savart law, it was argued that $$ q\frac{d\vec{s}}{dt}\equiv Id\vec{s} $$ using the fact that the units are equal. Does this kind of argument always work? It seems too ...
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What is a proportionality constant? (Planck's constant)

I understand that Planck's constant is essentially the ratio between the energy of a photon and its frequency. There are 2 things that im trying to verify: isn't the number that Planck's constant ...
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Understanding units manipulation (speed of falling coconut after 20m)

When I was on holidays, I was told a story about how someone passing under a palmtree and almost got a coconut fall on his head. Given that these palmtrees where about $20m$ high, we wondered at what ...
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325 views

If we are using [eV] as a unit for energy, what, then, should the unit for mass and distance be?

This seems obvious but it is confusing since I know that in MKS (i.e. SI) system, we use Joule with Meter with KG. But if we're using electron volt (1.6e-19 J) for energy, should we change the mass ...
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561 views

Why is the candela dimension J, not W?

According to the table at the bottom of the Wikipedia page for the candela, the dimension for candelas is J (joules). Why is this not W (watts)? The luminous intensity for light of a particular ...
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343 views

Force and Natural Units

Today in my Physics lecture I suddenly thought of something. We all know that gravitational force is proportional to the two masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between ...
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358 views

How to choose the right units to compute the phase space volume in classical statistical mechanics?

Without the natural unit $\hbar$, why doesn't it seem to be a problem for Statistical Physics to define $$S=k_B\ log(\Omega)\ ?$$ If $\Omega$ is given in one unit system and I switch to other units ...
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65 views

Special relativity and missing factors of $c$

I am doing problems in a textbook called 'Introduction to Classical Mechanics' by David Morin. In one of the questions it says the following: In the lab frame, two particles move with speed $v$ ...
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89 views

Is there a difference between Hertz and 'frames per second'?

It's not uncommon that the term 'frames per second' (sometimes abbreviated as fps or FPS) is associated with, or even equated to, the unit Hertz (Hz). I'm not exactly sure how these two concepts ...
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45 views

Differences between 3 apples and 3 kg of apples according to base units

7 base units are defined in physics and other units are derived from these units. When we say "3 kg of apples", we mention its mass and mass is a base unit. But for "3 apples", what is its unit? Is ...
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Does the unit of Inertia include radians? [duplicate]

The unit for angular acceleration $\alpha$ is: $$\mathrm{rad/s^2}$$ The unit for torque is $\mathrm{Nm}$: $$\mathrm{kg\ m^2/s^2}$$ And their relationship with Inertia is: $$I = \tau/\alpha$$ So ...
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Units of the Stokes-Einstein rotational diffusion coefficient

The Stokes-Einstein rotational diffusion relation tells us that we can write down a rotational diffusion coefficient for a sphere as: $$D_r \approx \frac{k_B T}{\zeta_f} \approx \frac{k_B T}{(8 \pi ...
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When “weight” of an object is listed, is it really the mass or the weight?

I Have read an earlier post regarding this, but the answer wasn't perfect enough or I didn't understand so! Let me put it to clear, I know difference between weight and mass. Also I know the ...
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369 views

How do the units for angular velocity come out of $\omega = \sqrt{k/m}$?

I'm confused about an exercise of a book. I understand that the units for angular velocity is $\text{rad/s}$; but I don't understand, how can I get it from the relation $\omega=\sqrt{k/m}$. Solving ...
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1answer
59 views

Is there a name for a quantity that represents (volumetric) flow per unit of mass?

In a lot of medical literature about blood flow in the brain, researchers denote the amount of volumetric blood flow that passes through a certain amount of brain tissue as "cerebral blood flow". ...
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Why is the unit of hydraulic impedance/resistance kilogram per second and hypermeter?

I'm trying to figure out the unit of impedance in the hydraulic analogy of electronic networks. Assuming $$Z=\frac{P}{Q},$$ with $P$ as pressure difference, $Q$ as volumetric flow rate and $Z$ as ...
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25 cm of vacuum correspond to what pressure?

I the following (american) test Vacuum testing consists of placing samples from the packiging operation into a jar filled with water. A lid is placed over the samples to fully immerse them in the ...
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79 views

Is there a standard reference where entropy is set equal to zero in property tables?

For practical considerations, it seems that entropy is only meaningful as a difference between states, like $\Delta s$ going from state A to state B. For an ideal gas, for instance, standard formulas ...
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73 views

Has a system of natural units been designed for human-like scales?

A long time ago I was thinking about how the Imperial system of measurements is arbitrary and annoying, and I decided to design the best system of units ever (I wasn't very old then). I worked on this ...
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Are there Planck units for weak or strong “charge”, similar to the electromagnetic Planck charge $\sqrt{4~\pi~\epsilon_0~\hbar~c}~$?

Are there Planck units for "charge" of weak or strong interaction, similar to the Planck unit of electromagnetic charge: $\sqrt{4~\pi~\epsilon_0~\hbar~c}$ ? Are there perhaps direct substitutes, ...
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Do doomsday arguments influence doomsday hypotheses?

The doomsday argument supposes that in the absence of any other knowledge, if we know the age of something now, we may assume that we are seeing it in the middle of its lifetime and then calculate our ...
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34 views

Acceleration format and interstellar units

Calculating with m/s$^2$ is very helpful when dealing with acceleration on the human range, as accelerating from rest at 4 m/s$^2$ for 3 seconds will give a velocity of 12 m/s. g is also a very ...
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1answer
59 views

Why do we take the value of the constant in Coulomb's law as $\frac{1}{4\pi\varepsilon_0}$? [duplicate]

Why do we take the value of the constant in Coulomb's law as $\frac{1}{4\pi\varepsilon_0}$?
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Units and missing constants in quintessence expressions?

In cosmology, quintessence is an alternative to the cosmological constant. In this approach (described here), we consider a scalar field $\phi$ and its self-interacting potential $V\left(\phi\right)$ ...
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Different factors of $4\pi$ and $\epsilon_0$ in Poisson equation [duplicate]

Some authors claim the Poisson equation is $$\nabla^2 \psi = -\dfrac{\rho}{\epsilon\epsilon_0}$$ (e.g. Wikipedia) whereas other ones (e.g. Andelmann) claim it is $$\nabla^2 \psi = ...
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What is the constant appearing in the low energy action?

Usually one finds this expression for the low energy action $$S = \frac{1}{2\kappa_0^2}\int d^D X\; \sqrt{-G}\; \mathrm{e}^{-2\Phi}\,(R-\frac{1}{12}H_{\mu\nu\lambda}H^{\mu\nu\lambda}+4 ...
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574 views

Why can't the units of work and torque be interchanged? [duplicate]

When I'm studying about work and torque, I found that their unit are the same. But, why don't we use Joule (unit of work) instead of Newton-meter (unit of torque)? Since $\mathrm{1\ Joule = 1\ Nm}$, ...
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Does a 27 hp engine output the same amount of energy as lifting a 1 ton stone block almost 3 meters per second?

I’m trying to get a sense of how much energy a 27 horsepower engine outputs. 27 hp $=$ 20 133 watts (joules/second). Potential energy can be calculated as $E = mgh$ where $g = ~9.8\ m/s^2$ on earth. ...
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Is dimensional analysis used outside fluid mechanics and transport phenomena?

Most dimensionless numbers (at least the ones easily found) used for dimensional analysis are about fluid dynamics, or transport phenomena, convection and heat transfer - arguably also sort of fluid ...