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Physics

Definitions (OCR A2)

TermDefinition
Absolute zero The temperature at which a substance has minimal internal energy.
Amplitude Maximum displacement from rest or equilibrium position (m)
Angular frequency Omega. It’s 2πf
Boyle’s law The volume of a fixed mass is inversely proportional to pressure exerted on it, provided temperature is constant.
Displacement Displacement of a body from rest or equilibrium position (m)
Frequency Number of oscillations per unit time (Hz)
Geostationary orbit Orbit of the Earth made by a satellite that has the same period as the rotation of earth and is in the equatorial plane.
Gravitational field strength is the force per unit mass at that point.
Impulse Product of force acting on a body and the time it acts. Also be considered as change in the momentum of a body.
Inelastic collision A collision where momentum is conserved but kinetic energy is not.
Intensity Power per unit cross-sectional area
Internal energy The sum of a random distribution of kinetic and potential energies of the particles of a system.
Linear momentum The product of mass and velocity, giving a vector quantity.
Mole 1 mol contains 6.02x1023 particles – which is the Avogadro constant.
Net force Equal to the rate of change of its momentum
Newton’s law of gravitation The gravitational force of attraction between two bodies is directly proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between their centres.
Perfectly elastic collision A collision where kinetic energy and momentum are conserved.
Period The time taken for one complete pattern of oscillation (s)
Phase difference (oscillations): A measure of the relationship between the pattern of vibration at two points.
Pressure Force per unit area (Pa). 1 Pa = 1Nm-1
Radian Unit of angle or phase difference (rad). One radian is the angle subtended at the centre of a circle by an arc of circumference that is equal in length to the radius of the circle.
Simple Harmonic Motion SHM occurs when the acceleration of a mass is directed towards a fixed point and is proportional to its displacement from that point a is proportional to x
Specific heat capacity The energy required to raise the temperature of 1 kg of a substance by 1 K. (J kg-1 K-1)
Created by: littlefella