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Chapter 1
Units, Dimensions, and Measurements

The Scope of Physics
Physics is concerned with the interactions of energy, matter, space, and time, in order to discover the underlying mechanisms that underpin all…
Orders of Magnitude
The order of magnitude of a number is the power of 10 that most closely approximates it. Thus, the order of magnitude estimates the scale (or size)…
Models, Theories, and Laws
Scientists frequently use models to help them comprehend a specific collection of phenomena. In physics, a model is a condensed version of a physical…
Units and Standards of Measurement
A physical quantity is defined either by specifying its measurement method or by stating how it is calculated from other measurements. For example,…
Estimation of the Physical Quantities
On many occasions, physicists, other scientists, and engineers need to make estimates of a particular quantity. These are sometimes referred to as…
Base Quantities and Derived Quantities
In any system of units, the units for some physical quantities must be specified through a measurement process. These measurements are the base…
Conversion of Units
Sometimes, there is a need to convert from one unit to another one. For instance, reading a cookbook in which quantities are expressed in units of…
Accuracy and Precision
Scientists typically make repeated measurements of a quantity to ensure the quality of their findings and to evaluate both the precision and the…
Random and Systematic Errors
Scientists always try their best to record measurements with the utmost accuracy and precision. However, sometimes errors do occur. These errors can…
Rules for Significant Figures
In any measurement, the precision of the measuring tool is an essential factor. An ordinary ruler, for example, can measure length to the closest…
Significant Figures in Calculations
Uncertainty in measurements can be avoided by reporting the results of a calculation with the correct number of significant figures. This can be…
Dimensional Analysis
The concept of dimension is important because every mathematical equation linking physical quantities must be dimensionally consistent, implying that…
Problem Solving: Dimensional Analysis
Every mathematical equation that connects separate distinct physical quantities must be dimensionally consistent, which implies it must abide by two…
Solving Problems in Physics
Problem-solving is the ability to apply general physical principles to specific situations, usually expressed by equations. It is an essential skill…
Measuring Spatially- and Directionally-varying Light Scattering from Biological Material
Light interacts with an organism's integument on a variety of spatial scales. For example in an iridescent bird: nano-scale structures produce color;…
Measurement of Outgassing Rates of Steels
Steels are commonly used materials in the fabrication of vacuum systems because of their good mechanical, corrosion, and vacuum properties. A variety…
Near-Infrared Temperature Measurement Technique for Water Surrounding an Induction-heated Small Magnetic Sphere
A technique to measure the temperature of water and non-turbid aqueous media surrounding an induction-heated small magnetic sphere is presented. This…

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