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Introductory Physics - Physical Quantities, Units and Measurement

This document provides an introduction to physical quantities, units, and measurement in physics. It begins with definitions of key terminology like physical property, scalar and vector quantities, and standard form notation. It then discusses the International System of Units (SI) including the seven base units, common prefixes, and how to convert between multiples and submultiples of units. The document also covers derived SI units and examples of converting between derived units. It emphasizes the importance of understanding whether a quantity is scalar or vector.

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Introductory Physics
Physical Quantities, Units
and Measurement
(Updated: 20150702)
Statement of Copyright and Fair 
Use
The author of this PowerPoint believes that the 
following presentation contains copyrighted materials 
used under the Multimedia Guidelines and Fair Use 
exemptions of U.S. Copyright law applicable to 
educators and students. Further use is prohibited.
If owners of images used in this presentation feel 
otherwise, please contact the author and he will take 
them down if other amicable resolutions cannot be 
agreed upon.
© Sutharsan John Isles 2
Expected Prior Knowledge
It is assumed that you know the following 
sufficiently well. If you feel that you do not 
know them sufficiently, please visit those topics 
in your books before continuing further:
Mathematical Symbols
The Real Number System
Fractions and Decimals
Significant Figures
Angles and Bearings
Indices
3© Sutharsan John Isles
4
Terminology
A feature
a noticeable part of something
http://simple.wiktionary.org/wiki/feature
What do you notice about the two lines below?
© Sutharsan John Isles
5
Terminology
A characteristic
a typical feature of something
http://simple.wiktionary.org/wiki/characteristic
Compare the vehicles below. What is characteristic of both
vehicles?
A limousine An ordinary car
© Sutharsan John Isles
6
Terminology
A property
something that gives an object its characteristics
Observe a piece of rubber band. What do you notice when
it is pulled and released? What could you say is
characteristic of objects made with the same type of
material? Ultimately, what can you say is a property of
rubber?
Note: Rubber is not the only elastic material. (Spandex used
in stretch jeans, is another example.)
© Sutharsan John Isles

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Introductory Physics - Physical Quantities, Units and Measurement