What Is Physics?

• Identify activities and fields that involve the major areas within physics. Describe the processes of the scientific method. Describe the role of models and diagrams in physics.

Many people con ider phy ics to be a di fficu It science that is far removed from their lives. Thi may be becau e many of the world's mo t famou study topic cl within an atom, often using complicat d tool to physicists uch a the tructure of the universe or the incredibly small partibserve and mea ure

• •

what they are studying. But everything ar und you can be described by u ing the tool f physic . The goal of phy ics i to u e a small number of ba ic concept, equation, and a surnptions to describe the phy ical world. The e physic principle be u ed to make prediction the arne physic principl two planet Many phy ici t about a broad range of phenomena. that are u ed t describe th interaction can then between For example,

can be u ed to de cribe the moti n fa

atellite orbiting Earth. an be rewardin g just tool, and buildings

rudy th law of nature simply to ati fy their curio sity

about the world we live in. Learning the law of phy i for it own ake. Also, many of the invention, we live with today are mad Phy ics di coverie
Figure 1 Without knowledge of many of the areas of physics,making cars would be impossible.

po .ible by the application

f phy ic principles.

oft n turn out to have unexpected practical applications, apply to building and operating a car.

and advance in techn logy can in turn lead to new physic dis overie . Figure 1 indicate how the area of phy i
Efficient engines,

Thermodynamics use of coolants

Electromagnetism Battery, starter, headlights


rearview mirrors

Shock absorbers, radio speakers

Mechanics Spinning motion of the wheels, tires that provide enough friction for traction


Chapter 1

sics is everywhere .",are surrounded

by principles of physics in our everyday lives. In fact, most

_- pIe know much more about physics than they realize. For example, when buy a carton of ice cream at the store and put it in the freezer at home, do so because from past experience you know enough about the laws of - , ic to know that the ice cream will melt if you leave it on the counter.
Any problem that deals with temperature,

size, motion, position, shape, or

or involves physics. Physicists categorize the topics they study in a number

= . erent ways. Table 1 shows some of the major areas of physics that will
e cribed in this book. People who design, build, and operate sailboats, such as the one shown in azure 2, need a working knowledge of the principles of physics. Designers :_~ e out the best shape for the boat's hull so that it remains stable and float_,..., et quick-moving y
t: w

and maneuverable.

This design requires knowledge of of the science of motion and of a sailboat requires knowlFigure 2

~'" physics of fluids. Determining -

the mo t efficient shapes for the sails and

to arrange them requires an understanding ause. Balancing loads in the construction

Sailboat designers rely on knowledge from many branches of physics.

edse of mechanics. Some of the same physics principles can also explain how

me keel keeps the boat moving in one direction even when the wind is from a

- ightly different direction.

Table 1

Areas Within Physics


motion and its causes, interactions between objects heat and temperature

falling objects, friction, weight, spinning objects melting and freezing processes, engines, refrigerators springs, pendulums, sound mirrors, lenses, color, astronomy electrical charge, circuitry, permanent magnets, electromagnets particle collisions, particle accelerators, nuclear energy the atom and its parts


Vibrations and wave hen omena

specific types of repetitive motions light


electricity, magnetism, and light particles moving at any speed, including very high speeds




behavior of submicroscopic particles

The Science

of Physics


Make observations and collect data that lead to a question.

When scientists look at the world, they see a network of rules and relationhips that determine what will happen in a given ituation. Everything you will study in this course was learned because someone looked out at the world and a ked questions about how things work. There is no single procedure that scientists follow in their work. However, there are certain step common to all good scientific investigations. These steps,

Formulate and objectively test hypotheses by experiments.

calJed the scientific method, are summarized

in Figure 3. This simple chart is

easy to understand; but, in reality, most cientific work is not so easily eparated. Sometimes, exploratory experiments are performed as a part of the first step in order to generate observations that can lead to a focused question. A revised hypothesi may require more experiments.

Interpret hypothesis

results, if necessary.

Physics uses models that describe phenomena
Although the physical world i very complex, physicists often use l1!.oH.els to explain the most fundamental developed features of various phenomena. Physics has powerful models that have been very successful in describing are mathematical imple

and revise the

nature. Many of the models currentJy used in physic and model part of a sy tern or phenomenon

models. Simple models are usually developed first. It is often ea ier to study
State conclusions evaluated in

one at a time. These models.

a form that can be by others.

models can then be synthesized into more-comprehensive

When developing a model, physicists must decide which parts of the phenomenon are relevant and which parts can be disregarded. For example, let's say you wish to study the motion of the ball shown in Figure 4. Many observations

Figure 3 Physics, like all other sciences, is based on the scientific method.

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

Figure 4 This basketball game involves great complexity.


Chapter 1

Furthermore. (a) isolate the objects that will affect r:s motion. peed. situations such as building a car or _ . and it makes no noi e on impact. the color : the boat. In effect.-- -0-- . Figure 5 ..hrw. e simplifications... such as the ball's color. the physicist studies the motion of a ball by first creating a imple ode] of the ball and its motion."Typically. spin. you can eliminate everything ~ ept information that affect the ball' motion. time in the air. like the one in Figure 5(b).analyze the basketball's motion. size.. . . eight. Then. Ca) system a set of particles or interacting components considered to be a distinct physical entity for the purpose of study Cb) ... suppose you decide to study the motion in the air (before it potentially reaches any of the other players). . the model of the boat. .II . . Without models to simplify matters. a single object and the items that immediately affect it are the focus of attention. that ~ to define the sxs elJ!...... way to summarize the e models i to build a computer simulation or of motion. anaJyzing the ::10 . g a boat would be too complex to study.com for the activity "Serendipity and Science.can be made about the situation. and sound when hitting the ground.Keyword HF6S0PX all. .. In spite of rere a perfectly smooth-flowing -: sailboat will move. You can disregard characteri tics of the ball that have little or no effect on it motion." . . the model object is iso--e . spin.. or size. color. . 1n other words. (b) draw a diagram :hat includes only the motion of the ject of interest. In some studie only quantity investigated. To study this situation.. . For instance.own in Figure 5(a). For instance. it has no color.. as . the analysis can still make useful predictions of how the The Science of Physics 7 . The fir t _ P toward simplifying this complicated situation is to decide what to study.. including the ball's surroundings. even the ball's spin and size are disregarded. Frequentr: a model can be summarized ~other with a diagram.on of a sailboat is made easier by imagining that the push on the boat ::om the wind is steady and consistent. The boat is also treated a an object a certain mass being pushed through the water.. Unlike the real ball. . and the details of its shape are left out of :> analysis.. the water the boat moves through is treated as if it liquid with no internal friction. as shown in Figure 5(b).. and the change in the ball's position will be the • Integrating Biology Visit go.cale replica of the situation..

Models can hel. a in (c). scientists beli ved that a heavy object would faU faster than a lighter object. • J (a) Galileo's Thought Experiment Galileo's Hypothesis 1 (b) (c) I 1 (d) 1 Models help guide experimental design to test hi byp the i . 8 Chapter 1 the ramp. a ill (d). So.. Galileo u ed the motion of a baJJ rolling down a ramp as a model of the motion of a falling ball. would two bricks of different masses tied together fall slower (b) or faster (c) than the heavy brick alone (a)! Because of this contradiction. the tied bricks should fall faster than th heavier brick.:.. the loser the model came to repre enting a falling obj ct. Thus. a in (a). wa observing difference due to weight... Galileo hypothesized instead that all objects fall at the same rate. For thi reason. Consider the example of Galilee's "thought experiment.oQi~~t_s__f~lJ. Figure 6 If heavier objects fell faster than slower ones.p buUd hypodlCSCS hypothesis :m l'lxf)lanation Chat is na ea on prior scientific research or obser- scientifi that can be tested with additional 1iy. and the lighter brick wiU slow the fall of the heavier brick faJJat a rate in between that of either brick al ne. www.i a reasonable explanation for ob ervations-one experiment. the heavier omewhat. as in (d)... GaWe u ed thi logical contradiction to refute the idea that different fall at the rna e fall at different rates. How ver. ramp experiment in hi hypoth sis.scilinks. a in (b)..!\ttime Galilee published hi work on falling obie the 1638. he k pt aJJ other variables the same: the object he te ted had the same ize (but different weight) ured falling from the same point." in which -- modeled the oenavror of fallmg objects in order to develop a hypothesis hg~ . The proce s of simplifyinCT 'ariabl ~- vations and that can be tested and modeling a ituation can help) ou determine the relevant identify a hypothesis for testing. th two brick together have a greater mass than th heavier brick alone. the tied brick should brick will peed up the faJJ of the lighter brick somewhat.To be certain he and were meas- .org Topic: Models in Physics Scilinks Code: HF60977 Galileo performed many experiments . alileo imagined two objects of different masses tied together and relea ed at the arne time from the same height. When tied tog ther. He hypothe ized in tead that all object ame rate in th absence of air resistance. SCfINKS. uch as the two brick of different ma es shown in Figure 6.pol1l_~sjs.. The m asuring device the motion of object at that time were not precise enough to measure he teeper falling in air. uppo e that the heavier brick fall faster than the lighter brick when they ar eparate.. These provided data that matched the prediction Galilee made .

. If the unexpected results are confirmed. That is why the last step of the scienethod is so important. Identify the area of physics that is most relevant to each of the following ituations. testing the effects of a collision on the alloy b. But . Name the major areas of physics. lightning in a thunderstorm e. scientists repeat the experiment e results are not in error.oy can affect a magnetic compass needle The Science of Physics 9 . ~I)Jn:. scientists also research the work of other scientists. a high school football game b.~. must be abandoned or revised. physics models can make predictions ~---"':v' in new situations e invention of the air pump. testing whether the all.~:> Galileo's hypothesis. it wa not po sible to perform direct tests of model by observing objects falling in the absence of air resistance. 4. at e another experiment until they are sure ~".l. food preparation for the prom c. time to determine what influences the phenomenon controlled experiment an experiment that tests only one factor at a time by using a comparison of a control group with an experimental group '----T1·m.. a. ough it was not completely testable. What are the activities involved in the scientific method? Give two examples of ways that physicists model the physical world. testing the effects of extreme heat and cold on the alloy c. A conclusion is valid only if it can be verified by - SECTION REVIEW 1.:. Galilee's model was used to make aably accurate predictions about the motion of many objects._ea an experiment to test a hypothesis. \Vhen this occurs. from rain:-::0 boulders ::: '"e:l Did you knoVll? In addition to conducting experiments to test their hypotheses. The steps of this type of research include • identifying reliable sources • searching the sources to find references • checking for opposing views • documenting sources • presenting findings to other scientists for review and discussion (even though they all experience air resistance). may produce results that do not support the if some experiments produce results that support a certain model.. playing in the school band d. 2. wearing a pair of sunglasses outside in the sun 3.O:. 5. you must change one variyou are observing. the ce.-__. any hypothesis must be tested in a contto. Critical Thinking sailboat hulls: Identify the area of physics involved in each of the following tests of a lightweight metal alloy proposed for use in a. Explain your reasoning. ~ In -:"'JIII~:U performed a series of experiments using ball of different weights on ramp before determining the time they took to roll down a steeper ramp.

and a celeration of length. An accurate analysis of such experiments require' numerical measurement. Each base unit des ribes a ingl Figure 7 The kilogram is the only SI unit that is defined by a material object. th re are only s ven ba e units. rna . Thi sy tern of unit dim nsion. For examt everal qu or What phy ical nt- In cience.and time. mass. For example. into NUMBERS AS MEASUREMENTS Phy i j ts p rform experirn nt to test hyp the e ab ut how changing one variable in a ituation affect an ther variable.time. velocity.Measurements in Experiments SECTION OBJECTIVES • • • • list basic SI units and the quantities they describe.and time. In I. meter than in kilom ter of thes everal chapters. ed in term phy ical quantities can aU be de cribed a combinations for electric current. 0 uch as i ailed hown in Figure 7. for temperature ter we will need to add two other dimen into fa phy ical quantity i repre ented by a ceron the units with whi h the quantity is tain numerical mea urement depend mall di tan e are more ea ily measured in millir light-years. ple a mea urernent repor ed a 7 lead quantity i being m asured-length. Th description of how much mea ured. In the next urements can b expre. mea urem nts ar more than ju rna . urnerical measurement ematics clas . YOll will encounter three ba ic dimen ion: length. They al agreed on de ignation for the fun- needed for mea urernent . volume. The platinum-iridium cylinder shown here is the primary kilogram standard for the United States. Use significant figures in measurements and calculations. For example. meter. a number lik 7 can tand alone and be us d in a numb tion. an international the tandard the damental quantitie t communicate the re ults of their exp rt- ment with each oth rand agr e on a sy tem of unit for their measurements. or time. Many other measthree dimen ion. Convert measurements scientific notation. SI is the standard measurement system for science When cienti t do re earch. h a length.. In math matic equation. what unit or light-year? The de m thing el e? If it i w re u ed for the measurern ription of what kind of phy ical quantity i repre ented by a cer- tain mea urement is alled dim en ion. hapand uch a force. In later our list. 10 Chapter 1 . rna . committee azreed on a y tern of tandard. LI 'ysteme International d'Unites ( J). energy. they mu In 1960. Distinguish between accuracy and precision. feet inches mile I ngth that i being mea ur d. are different from the number t Ll ed in a math1'.

it may appear that a new unit that is not one of the base unit is being introduced.. will be explained throughout this book as they are introduced. these units will be abbreviated as m. Derived units. In other cases. a illustrated in Figure 8.000011 574 average solar days Did you knovu? Th base units of length.33564095 x l 0-9 s the mass of a specific platinum-iridium alloy cylinder 9192631770 times the period of a radio wave emitted from a cesium-133 atom kilogram (mass) mass of 0. kilogram mass. and clock in the world is ..scilinks..or 10 mg. they are often xpr ssed in powers of 10. For example. NIST-Fl. For example. Figure 8 m) to the distance Because these numbers can be extremely difficult to read and write. forces and weights are typically measured in units of newtons (N).• Table 2 SI Standards Original standard I 10 000 000 distance SCfINKS~ Current standard www. Unit meter (length) from equator to North Pole the distance traveled by light in a vacuum in 3. The mass of this mosquito can be expressed several different ways: 1 X 10-5 kg. NIST-FI is so accurate that it will not gain or lose a second in nearly 20 million years. ot every observation can be described using one of these units. the Institute broadcasts the time given by NIST-FI through the Internet. For example. Derived units are formed by ombining the seven base units with multiplication or division. but the units can be combined to form derived units. peeds are typically expressed in units of meters per second (rn/s).000 000 001 m).001 cubic meters of water second (time) (6~)Uo) (2~) = 0.alibrated to give consistent results. In most measurements. distance measurem 000000000 nts can rang from the distances between stars (about 100000000 between atoms in a solid (0. We will use SI units throughout ecause they are almost universally accepted in science and industry. kg. and second.01 g.. mass.. SI uses prefixes to accommodate extremes Physics is a science that describes a broad range of topics and requires a wide range of measurements. respectively. but a newton is defined as being exactly equivalent to one kilogram multiplied by meters per econd squared (Ikg-rn/s"). radio stations WWV and WWYB. such as 1 x 10 l7 m or 1 x 10-9 m. such as newtons. but often these new units merely serve as shorthand ways to refer to combinations of units. an atomic clock at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Colorado. kilogram. These units are defined by the standards described in Table 2 and are this book reproduced so that every meterstick.org Topic: SI Units Scilinks Code: HF61390 . from very large to very small. and time are the meter.. and satellite signals. As a public service. re pectively. The Science of Physics 11 . and s. Another approach commonly fixes that symbolize certain used in SI is to combine the units with prepowers of 10. 0. is one of the most accurate timing devices in the world.

5 x 10-3 m.01 g precision or better) • 50 sheets of loose-leaf paper Record the following measurements (with appropriate units and metric prefixes): • the mass of a single sheet of paper • the mass of exactly 10 sheets of paper • the mass of exactly 50 sheets of paper Use each of these measurements to determine the mass of a single sheet of paper. 1 mm Uruts don tcancel: 37. How many different ways can you express each of these measurements? Use your results to estimate the mass of one ream (500 sheets) of paper. which is about 3. use the conversion factor that will cancel with the by 1. How many ways can you express this mass? Which is the most practical approach? Give reasons for your answer. It is useful to cross out units that cancel to help keep track of them. but the quantity will stay the same. 10-9 10-6 10-3 10-2 (Greek letter mu) 1012 10 15 m c P E 1018 The most common prefixes and their symbols are shown in Table 3.25 x 105 m from Earth's surface can be Metric Prefixes LIST expressed as 825 kilometers (km). Just put the quantity on one side of the equation in the numerator and the quantity on the other side in the denominator. Converting a measurement x 107 s. conversion factors from any equivalent relationship. The number described by the measurement To convert measurements. is equivalent to 5 millimeters (mm). including those in Table 3. as shown below for the case of the conversion 1 rnm = 1 x 10-3 m. Because these two quantities are equal. the units to which you are converting should be placed in the numerator. can also MATERIALS from its prefix form is easy to do. the following equations are also true: 1mm ---=1 and 1O-3m ---=1 Imm 10-3 m Thus.72 x = 3.2 jnar x 10-3 m 11J1E"t' = 3. . Typically. the length of a housefly. You can build • balance (0. A year.72 x 10 4 mm2 m 102m _ 12 Chapter 1 . For example. as shown in the example below.. units you are given to provide the units you need. any measurement multiplied multiplied by either one of these fractions will be and the unit will change.2 be expressed as 32 megaseconds (Ms).Table 3 Some Prefixes for Powers of lOUsed Power 10-18 10-15 10-12 Prefix Abbreviation a f Power 10-1 101 103 106 10 9 with Metric Units Prefix deciAbbreviation d da k M G T attoferntopiconanomicrornillicenti- dekakilomegagigaterapetaexa- p n 1..1. and the distance of a satellite 8.2 mm x -3 10 m Units do cancel: 37.

which was scheduled to land near the edge of the southern polar cap of Mars shortly after the orbiter arrived.=~ Why it Maners "Fl1e~Mars Climate Orbiter Mission The $125 million Mars Orbiter mission failed because of a miscommunication about units of measurement. The orbiter reached Mars nine and a half months later.1998. communication with the Mars Polar Lander was also lost as the lander entered the Martian atmosphere on December 3. Florida. A later Mars mission. the SI unit for force. Unfortunately. However. California. the orbiter did not respond to this final signal. The orbiter was launched from Cape Canaveral. and often unknown conditions in space and on other planets. on December 11. The orbiter most likely overheated because of friction in the Martian atmosphere and then passed beyond the planet into space. Its thrusters were fired several times along the way to direct it along its path. The Spirit and Opportunity rovers have explored the surface of Mars with a variety of scientific instruments.'"---=--~=-"'CO". generate daily weather maps. magnets. he Mars Climate Orbiter was a ASA spacecraft designed to take ictures of the Martian surface. The failure of these and other space exploration missions reveals the inherent difficulty in sending complex technology into the distant. Among other things. The Mars Climate Orbiter was built by Lockheed Martin in Denver. om an orbit about 80 km (50 mi) above Mars. but somehow the error escaped notice until it was too late. _~. A signal was sent to the orbiter to fire the thrusters a final time in order to push the spacecraft into orbit around the planet. Thus. Such a problem normally would be caught by others checking and doublechecking specifications. successfully placed two rovers named Spirit and Opportunity on the surface of Mars. harsh. However. NASA soon determined that the orbiter had passed closer to the planet than intended.1999. Review of the failed mission revealed that engineers at Lockheed Martin sent thrust specifications to the flight control team in English units of pounds of force. while the flight control team assumed that the thrust specifications were in newtons. the rovers found convincing evidence that liquid water once flowed on the surface of Mars..__. where they collected a wide range of data. The Science of Physics 13 . the Mars Polar Lander. as close as 60 km T (36 mi). and analyze the Martian atmosphere . NASA has had many more successes than failures. It was also supposed o relay signals from its companion.. including cameras. and a rock-grinding tool. 1999. fatally damaged. it is possible that Mars supported life sometime in the past. while the mission was run by a NASA flight control team at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. the Exploration Rover mission. Colorado. on September 23. spectrometers.

measurement be expres ed in unit dim nsion of ma avoiding error are appropriate . it i better to make the conversion to tbe arne unit before doing any more arithm tic.375 are multiplied to find the area. It i also necessarv to on vert one unit to an ther when working with unit from two different ysterns. an ample. mea urem nts us d in calculations hould also have the arne unit. whi h 'how two people mea urinz a room to determine th room' area. uch as meter and feet.5 <f£X:~ (e) about '? '? the dirnen: i n: of that quantity. beingsought in a problem or alculati n.35 m ~ 1O.17f2. When the number 2 2 ~ 254. F r example. if both mea urernents are made u ing the same units. the calculated area i much ea ier to interpret becau e it i expre sed in hown in Figure 9(c). L1Ppo e one p [son mea ures the length in meter and the other per on mea ures the width in entimeter. One good technique for in an an wer to be certain th y expressed in unit that refer t tb in phy ic is to che k the unit for th dimen ion of th physical quantity that i. describe th to be rtain that a measurement is ct dirnen ion. 14 Chapter 1 . a answer in units of crn-rn. Even if the m asurement: were made in ne unit an be ea ily converted to the and m t different unit.70 In additi n to having the orrect dimension.I will give a difficult-to-interpret ure 9(b). other becau e entirneter r are both units of length.5 4070 When determining area by multiplying measurements of length and width. 20. It i very important COlT be au e units or kil gram. th y hown in Fig- about ~ . in Both dimension and units must agree Mea urement of phy i al quantitie of kilogram must be xpre sed in units that mat h of length cann t ~ 25437. a ther hand. 40. On the units of m2. In order to avoid confusion. a in the example above..Figure 9 (b) 2035 em ~ 1017. on ider Figure 9(a). be sure the measurements are expressed the same units.

The Science of Physics 15 . SOLUTION Given: Unknown: mass = 2. 2.and ----"-. (2. The distance between the sun and Earth is about 1. A hydrogen atom has a diameter of about 10 nm.3Z) = 1 2. Express this distance with an S1 prefix and in kilometers.. take this answer and use a similar process to cancel the units of gram to give units of kilograms.I SAMPLE PROBLEM A _ . 1 x 10-15 g 1 fg -----=.440 x 106 g. Express this mass in kilograms. A human hair is approximately 50 urn in diameter. 4. Express this diameter in meters. c.0 x 10-18 kg 1 PRACTICE A Metric Prefixes 1. what is the wave's period in seconds? 3. 5. a. Express this diameter in millimeters. Express this measurement in terms of grams and kilograms. b. Express this diameter in meters. 10(2. Th average mass of an automobile in the United States is about 1.0 fg mass =? g mass =? kg Build conversion factors from the relationships given in Table 3.0 x 10- 15Z)(l : ~.0 fg.0 X 10-15 g I Then.0jg) 1 X ljg ( 15 0 0) = I 2.---1fg 1XlO-15g Only the first one will cancel the units of femtograms to give units of grams.. Two possibilities are shown below. Express this diameter in micrometers.-.5 X io!' m. If a radio wave has a period of 1 us. - etric Prefixes OBLEM A typical bacterium has a mass of about 2.

for example. a type of error called method error will result. or result is known as uncer- tainty.2 cm long. A numeric measure of confidence in a measurement expressed by using statistical methods. Although these tenns are often used interchangeably in everyday speech.'~""\ (c) Figure 10 If you measure this window by keeping your line of Sight directly over the measurement (a).ACCURACY AND PRECISION Because theories are based on observation and experiment. If some measurements are taken using one method and some are taken using a different method. Method error can be greatly reduced by standardizing the method of taking measurements. A lower uncertainty indicates greater confidence. For example. One way to minimize error from human oversight or carelessness is to take repeated measurements to ment. as in (b) and (c). as shown in Figure lOeb) and (c). In describing the imperfection.. they have specific meanings in a scientific discussion. If a wooden meterstick gets wet. Error in experiments must be minimized Experimental work is never free of error. 62 63 '"l. choose a line of sight directly over what is being measured. But no measurement is perfect. if a mistake is made in reading an instrument be certain they are consistent. you are likely to overestimate or underestimate the measurement. one must consider both. Rough handling can damage balances. a measurement's aC<. but it is important to minimize error in order to obtain accurate results. For this reason. Uncertainties are usually precision the degree of exactness of a measurement . If a meterstick or balance is not in good working order. difficult. making accurate measurements made to be careful with lab equipor recording the results. An error can occur. 16 Chapter 1 . it is important it can warp. If you are too far to one side. \of. you will find that it is 165. If you do not keep your eye directly above the mark. .. when measuring a length with a meterstick. Another type of error is instrument error.'U{l{Q}' and a a description of how close a measurement is to the correct or accepted value of the quantity measured measurement's pre_clsion. this will introduce error into any measurements with the device. you may report a measurement with Significant error. as shown in Figure IO(a). careful measureaccuracy ments are very important in physics.

A common so that other convention ~ eople can understand significant figures those digits in a measurement that are known with certainty plus the first digit that is uncertain urement has three significant figures. You can make a reasonable estimation of how far between the two marks the end of the pencil is and add a digit to the end of the actual measurement. The significant figures of a measurement include all the digits that are actually measured the precision of the markings on the measuring scale. if a meterstick is divided only into centimeters.25 cm. as shown in Figure 11.5 mm. On the other hand. A lack and is easurement of 1.5 mm and 230. plus one stimated digit. For example. you can improve the precision of a measurement. The last digit is reported as a 0. Suppose that in a laboratory experiment you are ked to measure the length of a pencil with a meterstick marked .2 cm. of where the mark on the instrument would have been. you can use it to report measurements to a precision of a millimeter. For example. (18 ern). zhe two marks.3 m. it i impossible to tell whether this number has two or three significant digits. Note that the number of significant figures is determined by The Science of Physics 17 . it is difficult to tell whether the zero is there as a place holder or as a significant digit.5 cm. try measuring from the 10 cm line. it will be difficult to measure something only a few millimeters thick with it. it can be difficult to know whether the measurement of 230 mm means the measurement is known to be between 225 mm and 235 mm or is known more precisely to be between 229. Because this digit is an estimate. Precision describes the limitations of the measuring instrument Poor accuracy involves errors that can often be corrected. In this case.15 ern and 18. a of 1. For example. the true value for the measurement is actually somewhere between 18. so you would report the measurement Significant figures help keep track of imprecision It is important to record the precision of your measurements and interpret your results. recision describes how exact a measurement can possibly be. it is best to minimize instrument error by making measurement with a portion of the from the cale that is in the middle of the meterstick. The end of the pencil lies somewhere between cm and 18.Because the ends of a meterstick can be ea ily damaged or worn. if a length is recorded as 230 mm. can be done by making a reasonable estimation This Figure 11 Even though this ruler is marked in only centimeters and halfcentimeters. In other words. In many situations. The length you have actually measured is slightly more than 18 ern.325 m is more precise than a measurement of precision is typically due to limitations of the measuring instrument Dot the result of human error or lack of calibration. Instead of measuring end (0 ern). the end of the pencil eems to be less than halfway between as 18. if you estimate.2 (for the estimated 0.2 ern past the 1 ern mark). in centime- er . When the last digit in a recorded measurement is a zero.

Table 4 Rule 1. the measurement is recorded to a power of 10. a. b. such as 0. The final reported height cannot be more precise than the least precise measurement used to find the an wer. if someone like the one shown in Figure 12. they will be treated as not significant. b. a. For example. depending on the precision of the measurement.3 m has three significant figures.000 15 cm should be expressed in scientific notation as 1. Zeros that are at the end of a number and also to the right of the decimal are significant. 57. Scientific notation is also helpful when the zero in a recorded measuredigits. 2. 4. For example. 0. but in this book it will be assumed that measurements like this have one significant figure. a measurement ment appears in front of the measured if it has two significant figure. 2.000 000 kg has seven significant figures. If it ha three significant figure. but in this book it will be assumed to have one significant figure. Zeros at the end of a number but to the left of a decimal are significant if they have been measured or are the first estimated digit. 20 m may contain one or two significant figures. rules for determining Figure 12 If a mountain's height is known with an uncertainty of 5 m.3 x 2 all of the figures given are significant. In this book.20 m of rocks will not appreciably change the height. For example.30 x 10 ern.0008 ms has one significant figure. Therefore.) 18 Chapter 1 .One way to olve such problems is to report all values using scientific notation. a. Zeros Rules for Determining Whether Zeros Are Significant Examples Figures between other nonzero digits are significant. 1000 m may contain from one to four Significant figures.20 m high on top of the mountain. that implies that its actual height is between 1705 and 1715 m. reports that the height of a mountaintop. it would be recorded as 2.00 g has four significant figures. Zeros in front of nonzero digits are not significant. is 1710 m. b. it would be recorded in scientific notation 2 10 cm. 50. 0. how many ignificant figures are in a measurement that includes zero are shown in Table 4. a.0025 s has five significant figures. the addition of 0.20 m.5 x 10-4 em The three zeros between the decimal point The and the digit 1 are not counted as significant figures because they are present only to locate the decimal point and to indicate the order of magnitude. b. they are not significant. and as 2.892 kg has three significant figures. If anoth- er person builds a pile of rocks 0. Significant figures in calculations require special rules In calculations. In scientific notation. 3. the reported height should be rounded off to 1710 m even if the pile of rocks is included. that would not uddenly make the mountain's new height known accurately enough to be measured as 1710. (Some books place a bar over a zero at the end of a number to indicate that it is significant. otherwise. if the length of 230 cm has two significant figures. the number of significant figures in your result depends on the number of significant figures in each measurement. This textbook will use scientific notation for these cases instead. 3.

65 m by 6. Table 5 summarize - 2 determining significant figures when you are performing calculations.an the measurements of the length and width.35 658.e area must be rounded off to 31 m .e sum of several dition/subtraction • ultiple roundings ill example.75 m. Table 5 Rules for Calculating with Significant Rule Figures Example Type of calculation addition or subtraction Given that addition and subtraction take place in columns.known only to be between 30. If the room's dimension -:. which implies that it is more precise . Similarly.3 + 5. 658 Calculators do not pay attention to significant figures 'hen you use a calculator to analyze problems or measurements. So.15 123 5. the answers to the sample problems in this book will always show aly the number of significant figures that the measurements Providing answer with the correct number justify. the calculator does not keep track of significant figures. ~o\\"ever.imilar rules apply to multiplication. the area of the room . You should consult teacher to find out whether to round this way or to delay rounding until . be rounded rule before the sum is multiplied by another number . but with this can increase the error in a calculation. However.65 m or as large as 4.85 103.82 m2.6 m by 6.05 round off) round off) containing an estimated digit.2 x figures. the result of a series of multiplications numbers hould should be rounded using the according to the rule before it is added to another number. Calculator often exaggerate the precision of your final re ults by returning vers with as many digits as the display can how. The Science of Physics 19 . - uires rounding the results of a calculation.39 m2. The area of the room can ve only two significant figures becau e each measurement has only two.e end of all calculations. .7 m. this er contains four significant figures. ethod there is no ambiguity about which rule to apply. Because the room could be as all as 4. To reinforce the correct proach. the product of these value would be 30. the two basic rules .26 m2 and 31. ultiplication or division The final answer has the same number of significant figures as the measurement having the smallest number of significant 103. round the final answer to the first column from the left 97. The rules listed in Table 6 on after each type of mathematical operation. and the results of a calrnlation will be rounded ultiplication/division .room by multiplying Suppose that you calculate the area of are the width and length. For iae next page will be used in this book for rounding.55 m by 6. figures often of significant you may be le to save time becau e the calculator can compute faster than you can.

the ma of the water in the pool c. whi h per on' results were a Which were preci e?"\ ere any both accurate and preci e? a.. 6.65000 becomes 32.Table 6 Rules for Rounding in Calculations What to do round down When to do it • whenever the digit following the last significant figure is a 0.5328 =? The f Ilowing tudent measure the density of a urate? d.S • if the last significant figure is an odd number and the next digit is a 5. 3 X 10-9 in milli econds c.S.42 g/cm3 c. Critical Thinking piece of lead three time .3. the time it takes a swimmer to swim a lap 2.2 32. 26 x 0. with no other nonzero digits 54. 11.7. Leah: 11.1. 11. The den ity of lead i actually 11.24 becomes 30. 11.6 22.55 g/crn '.45 . Considering all of the r ults.49 becomes 22.02584 = ? b. a.258 + 734.)4 g/crrr'.0 krn in meters 3. 15.04 af m3 20 Chapter 1 .44 g/cm . with no other nonzero digits Examples 30. 782. the length of a wimming pool b. Daniel: 11.2 32. Rach 1: 11.32 g/cm3.3. Which I unit would you u e for the foll winz mea urernent ? a. 63.3500 becomes 79.34 g/ ern 3.25 becomes 32. or 4 • if the last significant figure is an even number and the next digit is a 5.43 g/crn''. Perform the e calculation.1 = ? c.2.S 79.5 round up • whenever 6.2 = ? 4. 88.35 g/cm '. a.7511 becomes 54.4 -- SECTION REVIEW 1. 11.or9 the digit following the last significant figure is a • if the digit following the last significant figure is a 5 followed nonzero digit by a 54. 11. following the rule for significant figures.. Expre the following measur ments a indi ated.75 becomes 54.20 mg in kilogram b. 11..3.33 g/crrr' b. 1.

333 .267 . • . The Science of Physics 21 . and equations can make data easier to understand -. Perform order-of-magnitude calculations. Distinguish between conventions for abbreviating units and quantities. The shape of the graph also ?rovides information about the relationship between time and di tance. A clear trend • ~ be seen in the data. Then they can use the mathematical the real world._ e are many ways to organize data.59 34.92 54.antities to help predict what will happen in new situations. • les.20 8.133 . The more time that passes after each ball is dropped.67 19.93 54. Use dimensionaJ analysis to check the validity of equations. a table-tennis and a golf ball are dropped in a vacu urn. Figure 13 -=--.39 . their observaamong physical • Interpret data in tables and graphs.200 . Because the graph shows obvious pattern.60 34. the er the ball falls. In this experiment. Consider the experiment shown in 13. graphs.400 One method for analyzing the data in Table 7 is to construct a graph of the ance the balls have fallen versus the elapsed time since they were released. A ·enient way to organize the data is to form a table like Table 7. graph is shown in Figure 14 on the next page.40 Distance tabletennis ball falls (cm) 2. This experiment tests Galileo's hypothesis by having two balls with different masses dropped simultaneously in a vacuum. and recognize equations that summarize data. The resuJts are recorded as a set of ers corresponding to the times of the fall and the di tance each ball falls.34 78.20 8.67 19.The Language of Physics SECTION OBJECTIVES THEMATICS AND PHYSICS physicists create simplified models to better understand u e the tools of mathematics to analyze and summarize relationships s. which tests Galileo's hypothesis that all objects fall at the same rate in ab ence of air resistance (see Section 2).33 78. Table 7 Data from Dropped-Ball Experiment Time (s) Distance golf ball falls (cm) 2. we can draw a smooth curve through the data points to ce estimations for times when we have no data.067 .

Greek letter are used to des ribe mathematical operJ ations.00 20. SCI'NKSe --www.Graph of experimental data Figure 14 The graph of these data provides a convenient way to summarize the data and indicate the relationship between the time an object has been falling and the distance it has fallen. For example. the physical equation i a com act tat ment ba ed on a model f the ituation. physicist in an equati n.scilinks.4 ." and th Greek With the e c nventions tter ~ (sigma) is u ed to mean "sum" or "total.. often u e letters t are thought t be r lated. and A you aw in Section 2. ions as simple as pos ibl . the unit in which the e quantities are measured are also often abbreviated with symbol titie and variable able 22 Chapter 1 books provide some clue to help you k ep track of \ hich I tter: refer to quanand which letters are used to indicate units.. phy icist u e the tool dicted relationships de cribe mea ure 1 or prein a situation.. consi ting of a letter or two. I I I 0. It how how two or more variable Many of the equation tionship between phy ical quantitie de cribe pecific quantitie denote peed.9(M)- The abbreviation l1y indicate t indicate the verti al change in a ball' po ition from its th tim elap ed." the word equation above can be written as foUow : l1y= 4. between variof mathernati t .300 0.00 3 60. Graphing Physics equations describe relationships Whil mathematicians use equations to de cribe relation 'hip . 100.. In th case of a prediction.00 i:5 30..400 0. .9 x (tim of fall in e ond )2 about Thi equati n all w you repr duce the graph and make prediction the change in po iti n for any arbitrary time during the fall. between physical quantitie Scilinks Code: HF60686 one or more variables may affect the au tcorne of an experi men t.00 10.500 We can al 0 use th following equation to de cribe the relation hip between the variable' in the xperiment: (change in p ition in meter) t = 4.00 80. Typically variare abbreviated with letters that are and other specific quantities ... Most physics tarting point. For example.00 Q) ----------------~ . .. the letter v i u ed to (delta) is often used to mean "difference ornetimes.00 E 70..00 90. O.00 g 50. ables.00 ~ 40. in physic represent a imple de cription of the rela- 11 make expr s. . the Greek letter or change in..200 Time (s) -- .OO~~-~-~·~----r----~~+-~~-+_'~-------r--~~~ 0..org Topic.100 0. For example.

physics equation are valid only if they can be used to make correct predictions about _. ated below. (You will learn the difference between the two in the apter "Two-Dimensional ar letters (sometime Motion and Vectors. called dimensional . quantities can be added or You can use a powerful procedure subtracted only if they have the same dimensions. and recognize which units go with them. The total di tance traveled has the dimension ength. and the two sides of any given equation must have the same dimensions.0 h = length2 time 88 km or -x 725 krn 1. The tables proed in Appendices C-E can help you keep track of these abbreviations.e dimension That is. which does not have what you are trying to calculate. the result of this calculation . Although an experiment is the ultimate way to check the validity of everal techniques can be used to evaluate whether an _ uation or result can possibly be valid.ppose a car. Let us apply this technique to the problem of the car moving at a peed of 88 km/h. 6.Idfaced or italicized. orne examples of variable symof new • Integrating Chemistry Visit go.II and the abbreviations for the units that measure them are shown in Table8.") Units are abbreviated with called roman letters)." . . How can you decide a good way to solve the problem? analysis. Multiplying these numbers together gives the dimensions . including those involving how much time it would take for this car to travel 725 km if it moves with a speed of 88 km/h. _ physics equation._5 km. ngth over time.4 x 104 krn2 1. eated as algebraic quantities. is moving at a speed of km/h and you want to know how much time it will take it to travel . As you continue to study phy ics. Dimensional analysis makes use of the fact that dimensions can be . For example. ce most model physici ts build to describe the world around them. such a the one in Figure 15.Keyword HF6S0PX Table 8 Quantity Abbreviations for Variables Units meters seconds kilograms and Units Unit abbreviations m s kg Symbol position change in vertical time interval mass fly flt m EVALUATING PHYSICS EQUATIONS _ . ations. length I gth -x en time of time. Clearly.com for the activity "Dependent and Independent Variables. Dimensional analysis can weed out invalid equations . This measurement is given in dimensions of of inFigure 15 Dimensional analysis can be a useful check for many types of problems.0 h = ----- The Science of Physics 23 .hrw. carefully note the introduction ariable quantities.

. Once you have done this. each car needs about 500 gal per year. consider that the United States has almost 300 million people. you will be in a position to judge whether the answer you get from a more exacting procedure is correct. an estimate of the number of cars in the country is 120 million. you should take the distance and divide it by the speed of the car. We must divide the distance by the speed to find the time.1:ffX 1.. consider the car trip described in the discussion of dimensional analysis. 103 km-102 kmfh 10 h This estimate indicates that the answer should be closer to 10 than to 1 or to 100 (or 102).. If we assume that cars average 20 mi for every gallon of gas.org Topic: Orders of Magnitude Sci Links Code: HF61 074 ..:.-:-. such as estimating in New the of piano tuners Order-of-magnitude estimations check answers Because the scope of physics is so wide and the numbers may be astronomically large or subatomically small. decide the order of magnitude of the average distance each car travels every year.. I00009( 1 year 1 cral) 20 PH ( _0_.. This step will prevent you from wasting time computing an invalid equation. Next. you might be able to identify the invalid equation without dimensional anaJysis. The appropriate include in the estimate is 10000 mi. -= length/time Jeggth x time .. For example.. The speed. it i a good idea to check your final equation with dimensional analysis.. The correct answer (8. The distance.2h) certainly fit this range. it is often useful to estimate an answer to a problem before trying to solve the problem exactly. number York City. Fermi In a simple example like this one. For example. is closer to 103 km (or 1000 km) than to 102 km (or 100 km). -----=8.. as follows: ..length' = time . is about 102 km/h (or 100 km/h). 725 km. Assuming that each family of about five people has two cars.----. United States? First. per year.scilinks. or 10 rni. But with more-complicated problems. how could you estitions in which little information • mate how many gallons of gasoline are used annually by all of the cars in the SCI1NKS" --www. This kind of estimate is called an order-oj-magnitude calculation. orne cars travel as few as 1000 mi per year. 88km/h. which means determining the power of 10 that is close t to the actual numerical value of the quantity..0h h Did you knovv? The physicist Enrico Fermi made the first nuclear reactor University at the of Chicago in 1942. while others travel order of magnitude to 4 more than 100 000 rni per year...To calculate an answer that will have the dimension length of time. was also well known for his ability to make quick order-of-magnitude calculations. Order-of-magnitude e timates can also be used to estimate numbers in situais given. = 500 gal/year for each car 24 Chapter 1 .k.2 88]u1:r 725. 0 we use 103 km.

Multiplying thi by the estimate of the total number of car in the United tates gives an annual consumption (12 x 10' =)(5~~) ~ of 6 x 1010 gal.00 <m3) (c) co rJ) o -l-F""F'o--+-+--+--+---+1. t e.50 1.000 ~ 2.159 7.000 0.00 Volume <m3) 5.. Critical Thinking Which of the following equations best matches the data from item 4? a.00 10.000 ~ 4.00 3. mass = 1. a.000 0..50 Mass of air (kg) 0.899 5. (kg/s) (m/s)2 b.000 ~ 2. Indicate which of the following physics symbols denote units and which denote variables or quantities. mass = 1. kg (rn/s) (lIs) c.25 4. Which of the following is the best order-of-magnitude meters of the height of a mountain? a. (mass)2 c.00 3.000 ~ '..00 Volume . 1 m b.. 100 rn d. Volume (b) <m3) 5.29 = 1.000 0 rJ) 30. _. T 2. C d. c c. 6 x IOlO gal made about the aver- ate that this estimate depends on the assumption and the average gas mileage.000 1. 1000 ill 4. SECTION REVIEW 1.644 1..936 2.000 0 (a) 1.00 3.29 (volume) = 1.000 o 6. Interpreting Graphics Which graph best matches the data? Volume of air (m3) 0. T f. the number of cars per household.000 -'" (I) ~ 4.00 5.00 Figure 16 5.6. aze household size..096 8.50 2.000 ~ 10. (kg/s) (m/s2) d. the distance traveled. C b. Determine the units of the quantity described by each of the following combinations of units: a. (mass)(volurne) d. 10m c.29 (volume) b.29 (volumer' The Science of Physics 25 . (kg/s) (m/s) estimate in 3. 8.00 5. 20..

that calculation rule' pr vide a means that are more pI' cise than the data u ed to make them. a omple for analyzing and energy to light that can be u ed situation th is to es ence to make predi a variety of . from motion to di cover g nerallaw . 16) significant figures (p. invalid. Section 3 The Language of Physics • • Phy icists make their work ea ier by umrnarizing graph. 17) • KEY IDEAS Section I What Is Physics? • • Physics is the and electricity. i to reality. aJj are typically made and ex-pres ed in r a ystern of that u e a ct of ba e unit physical quantitie and prefixes to de cribe mea: urements If you need more problemsolving practice. rdcr-of-rnagnitude appropriatene calculations pro ide a quick way to evaluate the of an answer.7) hypothesis (p. • Accuracy describes how close a measurement from the limitation • The significant ignificant-figure report result figure actually measured of a mea urement Precision results that are do 110t of the mea suring devi ell ed. 9) accuracy (p. di r gard irrelevant of a ystem or situati fa tors and cr ate a m del that describe Section 2 Measurements in Experiments Phy i mea urement . include to ensure f the digit plu: one e timated digit.6) system (p. 16) precision (p. 8) controlled experiment (p. Phy ic usc A common the scienti fI method tion about t chnique tudy of the phy ical world. see Appendix I: Additional Problems. a DimensionaJ an help identify whether data in table and phy ics equation i Variable Symbols Quantities change in vertical position time interval m Units m meters seconds kg kilograms mass 26 Chapter 1 . and by abbre analy i iating quantities in quation.Highlights KEY TERMS model (p.ituation in phy i n.

the diameter of a large pizza e. The handle on the fountain seems loose. Refer to Table 1 of this chapter to identify at least two areas of physics involved in the following: a. the water squirts high enough that you can get a drink. the class president holds an election. A water fountain does not squirt high enough. the time it takes to playa CD in your stereo b. j." Which details of this situation would a physicist who i modeling the path of a fox ignore? IL Review Questions . You have decided to select a new car by using the cientific method. The majority of the tudents decide to go to the amusement park instead of to the shore. g. the mechanic decides the only other problem could be the fuel pump. List an appropriate 5I base unit (with a prefix as needed) for measuring the following: "\Vhich of the following scenarios fit the approach of the scientific method? a. Einstein's famou equation indicates that E = me".? 9. judging how hot an electric stove burner is by looking at it d. cooling off on a hot day by diving into a swimming pool SI UNITS r::: Review Questions 5. How might you proceed? a. Consider the phrase. and he consults with the shop's other mechanics about his conclusion. building a louder stereo system in your car b. the mass of a single slice of pepperoni a semester at your school the distance from your home to your school your mass the length of your physics lab room your height 6. in what units will the answer be expressed? L Conceptual Questions 8. The mechanic tests the idea byadju ting the idle peed. When you do thi . Your school' basketball team ha advanced to the regional playoffs. "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog. Then the mechanic decide his idea was wrong based on this evidence. Explain the advantages in having the meter officially defined in terms of the distance light travels in a given time rather than as the length of a specific metal bar. the mass of a sports car c. If you divide a force measured in newtons (1 new- ton = 1 kg. i. If you square the speed expressed in meters per second." Why was this a poor standard of length before it was redefined to refer to exactly 4 in. 3. f. the length of a soccer field d. An auto mechanic li tens to how a car runs and comes up with an idea of what might be wrong. what is the 51 unit for E? The Science of Physics 27 .Review E SCIENCE OF PHYSICS 4. A friend from another school says their team will win because their players want to win more than your school's team does. Given this. in what units will the answer be expressed? 7. 10. Because of a difference of opinions about where to take the clas trip. You make sure to tell all your friends how you did it. c. h. so you try to push the handle in as you turn it. b. where c is the speed of light and m is the object's mass.m/s2) by a speed expressed in meters per second. bungee jumping c. The height of a horse is sometimes given in units of "hands. d. Finally.

67 mm X n the difference of 27.563 s the product of 5. see Sample Problem A.46 em (two decimal places and four significant figures). A fisherman catches two sturgeons. 2 h 10 min expressed in seconds c.030°C d. 78. The length of each long side of the rectangle is found to be 38. find c. g. find the urn of the measurements 756 g. How many significant figures are in the following measurements? a. how many 85 kg people can safely occupy an elevator that can hold a maximum mass of exactly 1 metric ton? 18. Express the speed of light in the following ways: a. e. 1.9 b. 3. f. 2. 10-6 phones d.54 s and 3.2 m 20.L Practice Problems For problems 11-14.675 mg expressed in grams 462).83 g. What is the total distance around the field? 28 Chapter 1 .2 b. The photographs below show unit conversions on the labels of some grocery-store items.25. Use the SI prefixes in Table 3 of this chapter to convert these hypothetical units of measure into appropriate quantities: a.0032 mrn X ± 0.00 X 108 mls c. and the larger fish has a measured length of 135. 2000 mockingbirds c.305 20 MHz 21. 16 g expressed in micrograms 0.46 X 106 kg d. The value of the speed of light is now known to be 2. g. find d.2 m/3.99792458 x 108 m/s.788 109 s c. PRECISION. 0. and the length of each short side i found to be 19.004 J f. Can a set of measurements rate? Explain. Express each of the following as indicated: 17. Carry out the following arithmetic operations: a. If a metric ton is 1. Use the fact that the speed of light in a vacuum is about 3. How many significant figures are there in the following measurements? a. The smaller of the two ha a measured length of 93. with three significant figures b.8 s ACCURACY. 3.5 m. 11. What is the total length of the two fish? 22.000 x 103 kg.5 g the quotient of 3. with five significant figures c.75 km expressed in centimeters 0. 1. 2 dm expressed in millimeters b.tm expressed in centimeters 35 km/h expressed in meters per second ee) 12.3 cm (one decimal place and four significant figures). 0. 10 rations b. with seven significant figures 19.44 m. 10-9 goats e. 16..006 0700e e. d. A farmer measures the distance around a rectangular field. and 2.00 X 108 mls to determine how many kilometers a pulse from a laser beam travels in exactly one hour. 300000000 m/s b. 1018 miners 13. AND SIGNIFICANT FIGURES L Review Questions be precise but not accu- IS. Check the accuracy of these conversions. find 37. 0. 14. Are the manufacturers using significant figures correctly? (a) a.

T of the length in a ladybug your leg your school building a giraffe a city block correct. does this an equation is dimensionally mean that the equation is true? 33. 32. A chain of hamburger restaurants advertises that it has sold more than 50 billion hamburgers over the years. defined as the time necessary for one complete oscillation. AlB c. in which s is an abbreviation for (a + b + c) -7. 35.c) r= s • The period of a simple pendulum. Estimate the number of table-tennis balls that would fit (without being crushed) into a room that is 4 m long.) This problem was first proposed by the physicist Enrico Fermi. Assume your team plays an 81-game home schedule in a season. d. The Science of Physics 29 . Estimate how many baseballs you have to buy per season in order to make up for such losses. Estimate the magnitude of your age. A+B h. AxB d.b)(s . Estimate the number of piano tuners living in New York City. 1Il00 . b. (The population of New York City is approximately 8 million.MENSIONAL ANALYSIS AND HOER-Of-MAGNITUDE ESTIMATES _. One of your jobs is to keep a supply of baseballs for games in your home ballpark. have different dimensions. and c is given by the following equa'on. b. and 3 m high. 34. as measured in units of seconds.8 cm.eameters used in the solution. a student tries the following: (velocity in m/s)2 = (acceleration in mls2) x (time in s). 4 m wide. An automobile tire is rated to last for 50 000 mi. In a desperate attempt to come up with an equation to solve a problem during an examination.2. Since only order-of'tude results are expected. is measured in time units and is given by the equation T=2n Ir V~ vhere L is the length of the pendulum and ag is the acceleration due to gravity. L Conceptual Questions 28. Estimate how many pounds of hamburger meat must have been used by the restaurant chain to make 50 billion hamburgers and how many head of cattle were required to furnish the meat for these hamburgers. Check this formula for dimensional consistency. Balls are sometimes lost when players hit them into the stands as either home runs or foul balls. Estimate the number of breaths taken by a person during 70 years. Imagine that you are the equipment manager of a professional baseball team. do not be surprised if results differ from those of other students. 29. Use dimensional analysis to determine whether this equation might be valid. 36. Estimate the number of times your heart beats in an average day. who was well known for his ability to quickly make order-ofmagnitude calculations.A-B Estimate the order of magnitude eters of each of the following: a. Which of the following arithmetic operaions could be physically meaningful? a. (s .a)(s . Assume that the diameter of a ball is 3. Estimate the number of revolutions the tire will make in its lifetime. c. 30. which has units of length divided by time squared. Check this equation or dimensional consistency. you should state your important assump_ TIS including the numerical values assigned to . Review Questions uppose that two quantities.e: In developing answers to order-of-magnitude calzniations. e. 31. A and B. The radius of a circle inscribed in any triangle whose sides are a.

?-. a circle of radius 3. The crosssectional area of any circle is equal to different substance. The resulting "oil slick" that forms on the surface of th water will be approximately one molecule thick.5 cm 39. on downloadRefer to Appendix B for instructions ing the progranl for this activity. Because the wires have the same diameter. Consider a wire with a diameter of 0. so each wire has a different density and a different relationship between its mass and length.) Mass Versus Length What is the relationship between the mass and length of three wires. The following equation describes the mass of the wire as a function of the length: Y1 = 8. A billionaire offers to give you (1) $5 billion if you will count out the amount in $1 bills or (2) a lump sum of $5000. (Assume that you can count at an average rate of one bill per second.786 X 10-3 m3. Which offer should you accept? Explain your answer. and be sure to allow for the fact that you need about 10 hours a day for sleeping and eating.96X*n(O.hrw. Your answer does not need to be limited to one significant figure. Given an oil droplet with a mass of 9.8 cm on the water urface. In this graphing calculator activity.) 40.MIXED REVIEW 37. each of which is made of a different substance? All three wires have the same diameter. What should be the length of one side in meters for the container to have the appropriate volume? (Use the following conversion: 4 gt = 3. You can obtain a rough estimate of the size of a molecule with the following simple experiment: Let a droplet of oil spread out on a fairly large but smooth water surface. (Use the following formulas: circumference = 2nr and area = nr2. Each of the three wires is made of a 30 Chapter 1 .96 g/cm '. you will • use dimensional analysis • observe the relationship between a mathematical function and a graph • determine values from a graph • gain a better conceptual understanding HF6S0PX of density Visit go.) a.65 ern 38. what is the approximate diameter of an oil molecule? h. a circle of radius 4.00 x 10-7 kg and a density of 918 kg/rrr' that spreads out to form a circle with a radius of 41.com and type in the keyword to find this graphing calcuJator activity. Calculate the circumference and area for the foLlowing circles. and X represents the length of the wire in centimeters. their cross-sectional areas are the same. Y 1 represents the mass of the wire in grams. Exactly 1 quart of ice cream is to be made in the form of a cube.25)2 In this equation.50 em and a density of 8. n.

50 meters. which can be approximated 4. 4.68 x 1026 kg. that are typical 5. 1.ric equivalen t to all highway signs as follows: DalJas 300 mi (483 km). and a. Who founded the awards? Why? Who delivers the award? Where? Document your sources and present your findings in a brochure. (The surface area of a sphere is given 7 by 4nr-. Proponents more cumbersome. Estimate how long it would take to completely fill the box with micrometeorites. temperature. A.0 x 10-3 kg at 25°C. explore the history of the Nobel Prizes.03 its mass is 5. a pherical cell with a diameter of 1. Two plans are before you. 43. Which estimate do you think is the most accura te? Which is the most precise? clearly so that a partner can follow depicting the speed.41. or presentation. Find the surface area of Saturn in square meter. 2.0 m on a side. Then.0 x 10-6 m) struck each square meter of the moon each second.0 m3 of water at 25°C. Create a poster or other presentation possible ranges of measurement such as distance. How would you measure the mass of a drop of water? How would you measure the period of a swing? How would you mea me the volume of a paper clip? How can you improve the accuracy of your measurements? the procedures them and obtain reasonable results. Estimate the volume of the ark in cubic meters.0 mm long and 2. Determine the mass of 1. Include several example of your own experiences. all of your state's highway sign must show distances in miles and kilometers. and 30 cubits high. which is.0 m. Find the density of Saturn (its mass divided by its volume) in grams per cubic centimeter.0 mm (volume = Inr2) a. but remember to follow the rule for significant figures in calculations. If one micrometeorite (a sphere with a diameter of 1. on the moon. or mass. and scales sensitive to ] mg. for a dimension.0 crrr') of water has a mass of 1. poster. One plan uggests adding met. You have a clock with a second hand. (The volume of a sphere is given by inr3. X In. 50 cubit wide. Write so they propose replacing the old signs with new signs every 50 krn as follow : DalJas 300 km (186 mi). approximately 0.) b. estimate the masses (density multiplied by volume) of the following: (volume = n1'3) b. divide each measurement the number of coins to determine the approximate mass of a singJe five-cent coin. 42.J1 ancient unit of length called the cubit was equal to approximately 50 centimeters.0 urn i by a cylinder in diameter 107 45. The radius of the planet Saturn is 6. and research for physics their work. of the other plan ay eem that the first plan makes the metric system 3. very mall. it would take many years to cover the moon with micrometeorites to a depth of 1. a fly. one at a time. a graduated cylinder marked in milliliter. Find out who were the Nobel laureate last year. 44. Can you measure the mass of a five-cent coin with a bathroom scale? Record the mass in gram disby played by your cale as you place coins on the scale. Participate in a class debate about which plan should be followed. Also e timate the volume of a typical home.) Imagine that you are a member of your state's highway board.0 x 103 kg/rn '. time. Depict examples ranging from the very large to the The Science of Physics 31 . of course. It has been aid that oah' ark was 300 cubits long. Alternatively. Consider a cubic box. In order to comply with a bill pa ed in the state legislature. and compare it with the ark's volume. As uming biological sub tances are 90 percent water and the den ity of water is 1. One cubic centimeter (1. a ruler marked in millimeters.

mechanics G. umerically. D. quantum mechanics F.... What technique can help you determine the power of 10 do est to the actual numerical value of a quantity? A..0 x 10 ill 2 J. What area of physic subatomic particles? F.5 x 1010 m B. 9. kilometer F. G. J. _. C. A light-year (ly) i a unit of di tance defined as the distance light travels in one year.) G.S x 1015 m D. What term de cribe a set of particle or interacting component can idered to be a distinct physical entity for the purpo e of tudy? A. mechanics thermodynamics electrodynamic quantum mechanics deal with the behavior of 6. B. how will your mea urernent mo t likely be affected? 2.---__. two C. system model hypothesi controlled experiment I ba e unit for length? 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 11111 ! 1111111 111111111111111 20 A.6 m by 5. Standardized Test Prep MULTIPLE CHOICE 1. 20. meter J. B. electrodynamics J.88 m 2 5. 2 x 101 m2 I 2 H.. &~ . 7. foot H. one B. What i the area of the room? (Keep significant figures in mind. What area of physics deals with the subjects of h at and temperature? A. inch G. If you mea ured the length of a pencil by using the meter tick shown in the figure below and you report your mea urement in centimeters.. 2. B. three D. C. Your measurement will be less precise.____.5 x 1012 m C.5 x 1018 m 32 Chapter 1 . rounding order-of-magnitude e timation dimensional analysis graphi al analysi 4.. D. How many meters are in a light-year? A.8 m. thermodynamics H. --. Your measurement will have fewer ignificant figure.~-~. 9. 21 m 9. Your measurement will be les accurate. .. D.~. H. 9. A room i measured to be 3. 1ly = 9 500 000 000 000 km.-. four 8. 9. C.. If you do not keep your line of sight directly over a length measurement.. Your measurement will uffer from instrument error. What i the F. how many ignifi ant figures hould your reported mea urernent have? 3.

00 ---------------~. D. Both sides have the same dimensions.... About how far has the ball fallen after 0. The Science of Physics 33 .00 E 70. B. C.=-=-+!:. H..070 x 103 m figures in F. 0. (25. The graph below shows the relationship between time and distance for a ball dropped vertically from rest. O.. 00 -+--.-~-t--t. D.00cm 10. Graph of experimental data 100.00 cm 30.00 cm 12.200 s? A. '" I 20. For equal time intervals.873 krn) + (1024 m) + (3. Follow the rules for significant figures. In a paragraph. There are variables but no nwnbers.0057 kg 5. 5.200 Q) 14.~-+---+--. H.00 15 30.00 90. Both sides have the same variables.00 . For equal time intervals..... se the graph to answer questions 11-12. Determine the number of significant each of the following measurements. the change in position is increasing. Calculate the following sum. I ..00 ern 20.. Which of the following statements is true of any valid phy ical equation? SHORT RESPONSE 13. picka the ' multiple-choice answer that is most correct or that most directly answers the question. G. the change in position is constant. C.00 g 50. Demonstrate how dimensional analysi can be used to find the dimensions that result from dividing distance by speed.70 g 6070 m 6.. and express the answer in meters.00 ~ 40.__ 0. For equal time intervals. There is no clear relationship between time and change in position. I> '" '" '" '" . - -+--+--t- 0.00 80. the change in position is decreasing. '" .100 0.300 Time (s) 1. describe how you could estimate the number of blades of grass on a football field. EXTENDED RESPONSE 16. There are numbers but no variables. You have decided to test the effects of four different garden fertilizers by applying them to four separate rows of vegetables. Which of the following statements best describes the relationship between the variables? F. i~il If seems be answer to (6[4 Iquestionmore thanto onecorrect. I 10. G.0 cm) 15. J. B.00 S 60..00 . J. What factors should you control? How could you measure the results? 17.10. A.

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