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# chapter1 - CollegePhysics Chapter1 Introduction...

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College Physics Chapter 1 Introduction

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Theories and Experiments The goal of physics is to develop theories  based on experiments A physical theory is a “guess,” expressed  mathematically, about how a system works The theory makes predictions about how a  system should work Experiments check the theories’ predictions Every theory is a work in progress
Fundamental Quantities and  Their Dimension Length [L] Mass [M] Time [T] Other physical quantities can be  constructed from these three

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Units To communicate the result of a  measurement for a quantity, a  unit  must  be defined Defining units allows everyone to relate  to the same fundamental amount
Systems of Measurement Standardized systems Agreed upon by some authority, usually a  governmental body SI – Systéme International Agreed to in 1960 by an international  committee Main system used in this text

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Length Units SI – meter, m Defined in terms of a meter – the  distance traveled by light in a vacuum  during a given time Also establishes the value for the speed of  light in a vacuum
Mass Units SI – kilogram, kg Defined in terms of kilogram, based on  a specific cylinder kept at the  International Bureau of Weights and  Measures

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Standard Kilogram
Time Units seconds, s Defined in terms of the oscillation of  radiation from a cesium atom

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Approximate Values Various tables in the text show  approximate values for length, mass,  and time Note the wide range of values Lengths – Table 1.1 Masses – Table 1.2 Time intervals – Table 1.3
Other Systems of  Measurements cgs – Gaussian system Named for the first letters of the units it  uses for fundamental quantities US Customary Everyday units Often uses weight, in pounds, instead of  mass as a fundamental quantity

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chapter1 - CollegePhysics Chapter1 Introduction...

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