46 terms

7 major areas of physics

mechanics, thermodynamics, vibrations and wave phenomena, optics, electromagnetism, relativity, quantum mechanics

motion and its causes, interactions between objets

mechanics

heat and temperature

thermodynamics

specific types of repetitive motions

vibrations and wave phenomena

light

optics

electricity, magnetism, and light

electromagnetism

particles moving at any speed, including very high speeds

relativity

behavior of submicroscopic particles

quantum mechanics

a pattern, plan, representation, or description designed to show the structure or working of an object, system, or concept

model

many of the models currently used in physics are ________ models

mathematical

physicists often use _______ to explain the most fundamental features of various phenomena

models

a set of particles or interacting components considered to be a distinct physical entity for the purpose of study

system

an explanation that is based on prior scientific research or observations and that can be tested

hypothesis

an experiment that tests only one factor at a time by using a comparison of a control group with an experimental group

controlled experiment

in an experiment to test a hypothesis, you must change _____ _______ at a time to determine what influences the phenomenon you are observing

one variable

the description of what kind of physical quantity is represented by a certain measurement is called ________

dimension

three basic dimensions

length, mass, time

physical quantities that can be described as a combination of length, mass, and time (the three basic dimensions)

force, velocity, energy, volume, acceleration

the description of how much of a physical quantity is represented by a certain numerical measurement

unit

although each dimension is unique, a dimension can be measured using different ______

units (ex. time can be measured in seconds, hours, or years)

how many SI base units are there?

7

base unit of length

meter

base unit of mass

kilogram

base unit of time

second

SI uses ________ to accommodate extremes

prefixes

measurements of physical quantities must be expressed in units that match the ________ of that quantity

dimensions

measurements used in calculations should have the same _____

units

a description of how close a measurement is to the correct or accepted value of the quantity measured

accuracy

the degree of exactness of a measurement

precision

a numeric measure of confidence in a measurement or result is known as ________

uncertainty

during an experiment if some measurements are taken using one method, and some are taken using another method ______ _______ will result

method error

method error can be greatly reduced by _________ the method of taking measurements

standardizing

poor _______ involves errors that can often be corrected

accuracy

a lack of _______ is typically due to limitations of the measuring instrument and is not the result of human error or lack of calibration

precision

those digits in a measurement that are known with certainty plus the first digit that is uncertain

significant figures

a common convention used in science to indicate precision is known as ________ _________

significant figures

significant figures are the ones that we know for ______, as well as the first digit that is ________

certain -- uncertain

in scientific notation, the measurement is recorded to a power of 10, and all of the figures given are _________

significant

zeros between other nonzero digits are ________

significant (ex. 50.3 has 3 significant figures)

zeros in front of nonzeros are ________

not significant (ex. 0.892 has 3 significant figures)

zeros that are at the end of a number and also to the right of the decimal are _________

significant (ex. 57.00 has 4 significant figures)

significant figures rule for addition and subtraction

round the final answer to the first column from the left containing an estimated digit

significant figures rule for multiplication and division

final answer has the same number of significant figures as the measurement have the smallest number of significant figures

physicists use the tools of mathematics to describe measures or pre directed relationships between _______ ________ in a situation

physical quantities

to make expressions as simple as possible, physicists often use ______ to describe specific quantities in an equation

letters

______ _____ ______ estimates can also be used to estimate numbers in situations in which little information is given

order-of-magnitude