12 terms

You Gotta Know Scientific Scales

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Celsius
linear temperature scale developed by a Swedish scientist; assigns 0 to freezing point and 100 to boiling point of water
Kelvin
linear temperature scale based on water's triple point; 0 is the lowest possible temperature
Mach number
linear scale; measures speed; defined as ratio of speed of object to speed of sound in same medium; named after Austrian physicist who studied the Doppler effect
Decibel scale
logarithmic scale; describes intensity of sound waves; named after Alexander Graham Bell
pH scale
logarithmic scale; quantifies acidity; >7=basic, 7=neutral, <7=acidic; developed by S. P. L. Sorensen
Richter scale
logarithmic scale; measures earthquake intensity; developed by and named for Caltech professor
Moment magnitude scale
logarithmic scale; has superseded the Richter scale and correlates to its measurements
Beaufort wind force scale
power scale; first official use was on the HMS Beagle; based on wind speed and other sea conditions
Enhanced Fujita (EF) scale
power scale; measures tornado strength; originally F0 to F5; enhanced scale exists
Mohs scale
empirical scale; based on the abilities of minerals to scratch one another; measures hardness
Pauling scale
empirical scale; measures electronegativity; higher values = stronger attractions
Saffir-Simpson scale
empirical scale; measures wind speed and hurricane damage; rates hurricanes 1-5