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Physics Terms Quiz

Get ready to have your mind blown with knowledge!

QuestionAnswer
Absolute humidity The ratio of water vapor in a sample of air to the volume of the sample.
Absolute zero The temperature of - 273.16 or 0 K at which molecular motion vanishes.
Absorptance The ratio of the total absorbed radiation to the total incident radiation.
Acceleration The rate of change of velocity with respect to time.
Acceleration due to gravity The acceleration imparted to bodies by the attractive force of the earth or any other heavenly body.
Achromatic capable of transmitting light without decomposing it into its constituent colors.
Acoustics The science of the production, transmission and effects of sound.
Zeeman Effect The splitting of the spectral lines in a spectrum when the source is exposed to a magnetic field.
Zeroth law of thermodynamics If body A is in thermal equilibrium with body B, and B is also in thermal equilibrium with C, then A is necessarily in thermal equilibrium with C.
Young's modulus of elasticity The ratio of normal stress to the longitudinal strain produced in a body.
Joule The unit of work and energy, 1J = 1N-m.
Joule's law of heating The heat produced when a current 'I' flows through a resistor 'R' for a given time't' is given by Q =I2Rt.
Quark One of the hypothetical basic particles, having charges whose magnitudes are one-third or two-third of the charge on an electron.
Quantum numbers Numbers that describe energy states of an electron.
Q unit A unit of energy, used in measuring the heat energy of fuel reserves, equal to 1018 British thermal units, or approximately 1.055x1021 joules.
Quantum mechanics Model of the atom based on the wave nature of subatomic particles, the mechanics of electron waves; also called wave mechanics.
Quantum limit The shortest wavelength, present in a continuous x-ray spectrum.
Quanta Fixed amounts; usually referring to fixed amounts of energy absorbed or emitted by matter.
Van der Wall's force General term for weak attractive intermolecular forces
Vector Quantity A quantity, which needs both magnitude and direction to describe it.
Velocity Distance traveled by a body in a particular direction per unit time or the displacement of the body per unit time. It is a vector quantity.
Vibration A back and forth motion that repeats itself.
Virtual image An image formed when the reflected or refracted light rays appear to meet; this image cannot be projected on a screen.
Volt Unit of potential difference, equivalent to joule/coulomb.
Voltage drop The electric potential difference across a resistor or other part of a circuit that consumes power.
Ultrasonic Sound Sound waves of frequencies above 20,000Hz.
Uniform Circular Motion The motion of an object in a circular path with uniform speed.
Unpolarized light Light consisting of transverse waves vibrating in all possible random directions.
Tesla The S.I. unit of magnetic flux density, defined as the magnetic flux density of a magnetic flux of 1 Wb through an area of 1m2.
Thermal Capacity The quantity of heat required to raise the temperature of the whole body by 1 .
Thermal Equilibrium When the two bodies in contact are at the same temperature and there is no flow of heat between them, these are said to be in thermal equilibrium.
Thermal Expansion The increase in the size of an object on heating.
Total internal reflection Condition where all light is reflected back from a boundary between materials; occurs when light travels from denser to rarer medium and angle of incidence is greater than the critical angle.
Transverse wave A wave in which the particles of the medium oscillate in a direction perpendicular of the direction of propagation of wave.
Trough The point of maximum negative displacement on a transverse wave.
Kelvin's statement of second law of thermodynamics It is impossible that, at the end of a cycle of changes, heat has been extracted from a reservoir and an equal amount of work has been produced without producing some other effect.
Kinetic energy The energy possessed by a body due to its motion, it is equal to ½ mv2, where m is the mass and v is the speed of the body
Kepler's first law of planetary motion Each planet moves in an elliptical orbit, with the sun located at one of the foci.
Kepler's second law of planetary motion The radius vector joining the planet to the sun covers equal areas in equal intervals of time.
Kepler's third law of planetary motion The square of the period of a planet is directly proportional to the cube of the radius of the semi major axis of the orbit.
Kilocalorie The amount of energy required to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water by 1 , 1 Kcal = 1000 calories.
Ohm Unit of resistance; 1 ohm = 1volt/ampere.
Ohm's law The current flowing through a conductor is directly proportional to the potential difference across the ends of the conductor.
Open system A system across whose boundaries both matter and energy can pass.
Optical fiber A long, thin thread of fused silica, used to transmit light, based on total internal reflection.
Oscillatory motion The to and fro motion of a body about its mean position.
Latent heat of fusion The quantity of heat required to convert one unit mass of a substance from solid to the liquid state at its melting point without any change in its temperature.
Half-life The time during which half the number of atoms in the element disintegrate.
Heisenberg uncertainty principle It is impossible to have a particle that has an arbitrarily well-defined position and momentum at the same time.
Hertz The unit of frequency, also known as cycles per second.
Hooke's law Within elastic limit, stress is directly proportional to strain.
Horsepower unit of power, 1H.P. = 746 Watts.
Huygens'principle Each point on a light wavefront can be regarded as a source of secondary waves, the envelope of these secondary waves determining the position of the wavefront at a later time.
Gamma ray A high energy photon
Inertia The property of a body to resist a change in its state of rest or of uniform motion.
Black hole The remaining core of a supernova that is so dense that even light cannot escape.
Doppler Effect The apparent change in the frequency of a wave due to relative motion between the source and the observer.
Bibliography etutorphysics.com/glossary
Created by: Scrubjay