# 0.4 Glossary of key symbols and notation

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In this glossary, key symbols and notation are briefly defined.

Symbol Definition
$\overline{\text{any symbol}}$ average (indicated by a bar over a symbol—e.g., $\overline{v}$ is average velocity)
$°\text{C}$ Celsius degree
$°\text{F}$ Fahrenheit degree
$\text{//}$ parallel
$\perp$ perpendicular
$\propto$ proportional to
$±$ plus or minus
${\phantom{\rule{0.25em}{0ex}}}_{0}$ zero as a subscript denotes an initial value
$\alpha$ alpha rays
$\alpha$ angular acceleration
$\alpha$ temperature coefficient(s) of resistivity
$\beta$ beta rays
$\beta$ sound level
$\beta$ volume coefficient of expansion
${\beta }^{-}$ electron emitted in nuclear beta decay
${\beta }^{+}$ positron decay
$\gamma$ gamma rays
$\gamma$ surface tension
$\gamma =1/\sqrt{1-{v}^{2}/{c}^{2}}$ a constant used in relativity
$\Delta$ change in whatever quantity follows
$\delta$ uncertainty in whatever quantity follows
$\mathrm{\Delta E}$ change in energy between the initial and final orbits of an electron in an atom
$\mathrm{\Delta E}$ uncertainty in energy
$\mathrm{\Delta m}$ difference in mass between initial and final products
$\mathrm{\Delta N}$ number of decays that occur
$\mathrm{\Delta p}$ change in momentum
$\mathrm{\Delta p}$ uncertainty in momentum
$\Delta {\text{PE}}_{\text{g}}$ change in gravitational potential energy
$\mathrm{\Delta \theta }$ rotation angle
$\mathrm{\Delta s}$ distance traveled along a circular path
$\mathrm{\Delta t}$ uncertainty in time
${\mathrm{\Delta t}}_{0}$ proper time as measured by an observer at rest relative to the process
$\mathrm{\Delta V}$ potential difference
$\mathrm{\Delta x}$ uncertainty in position
${\epsilon }_{0}$ permittivity of free space
$\eta$ viscosity
$\theta$ angle between the force vector and the displacement vector
$\theta$ angle between two lines
$\theta$ contact angle
$\theta$ direction of the resultant
${\theta }_{b}$ Brewster's angle
${\theta }_{c}$ critical angle
$\kappa$ dielectric constant
$\lambda$ decay constant of a nuclide
$\lambda$ wavelength
${\lambda }_{n}$ wavelength in a medium
${\mu }_{0}$ permeability of free space
${\mu }_{\text{k}}$ coefficient of kinetic friction
${\mu }_{\text{s}}$ coefficient of static friction
${v}_{e}$ electron neutrino
${\pi }^{+}$ positive pion
${\pi }^{-}$ negative pion
${\pi }^{0}$ neutral pion
$\rho$ density
${\rho }_{\text{c}}$ critical density, the density needed to just halt universal expansion
${\rho }_{\text{fl}}$ fluid density
${\overline{\rho }}_{\text{obj}}$ average density of an object
$\rho /{\rho }_{\text{w}}$ specific gravity
$\tau$ characteristic time constant for a resistance and inductance $\left(\text{RL}\right)$ or resistance and capacitance $\left(\text{RC}\right)$ circuit
$\tau$ characteristic time for a resistor and capacitor $\left(\text{RC}\right)$ circuit
$\tau$ torque
$Υ$ upsilon meson
$\Phi$ magnetic flux
$\varphi$ phase angle
$\Omega$ ohm (unit)
$\omega$ angular velocity
$A$ ampere (current unit)
$A$ area
$A$ cross-sectional area
$A$ total number of nucleons
$a$ acceleration
${a}_{\text{B}}$ Bohr radius
${a}_{\text{c}}$ centripetal acceleration
${a}_{\text{t}}$ tangential acceleration
$\text{AC}$ alternating current
$\text{AM}$ amplitude modulation
$\text{atm}$ atmosphere
$B$ baryon number
$B$ blue quark color
$\overline{B}$ antiblue (yellow) antiquark color
$b$ quark flavor bottom or beauty
$B$ bulk modulus
$B$ magnetic field strength
${\text{B}}_{\text{int}}$ electron’s intrinsic magnetic field
${\text{B}}_{\text{orb}}$ orbital magnetic field
$\text{BE}$ binding energy of a nucleus—it is the energy required to completely disassemble it into separate protons and neutrons
$\text{BE}/A$ binding energy per nucleon
$\text{Bq}$ becquerel—one decay per second
$C$ capacitance (amount of charge stored per volt)
$C$ coulomb (a fundamental SI unit of charge)
${C}_{\text{p}}$ total capacitance in parallel
${C}_{\text{s}}$ total capacitance in series
$\text{CG}$ center of gravity
$\text{CM}$ center of mass
$c$ quark flavor charm
$c$ specific heat
$c$ speed of light
$\text{Cal}$ kilocalorie
$\text{cal}$ calorie
${\text{COP}}_{\text{hp}}$ heat pump’s coefficient of performance
${\text{COP}}_{\text{ref}}$ coefficient of performance for refrigerators and air conditioners
$\text{cos}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\theta$ cosine
$\text{cot}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\theta$ cotangent
$\text{csc}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\theta$ cosecant
$D$ diffusion constant
$d$ displacement
$d$ quark flavor down
$\text{dB}$ decibel
${d}_{\text{i}}$ distance of an image from the center of a lens
${d}_{\text{o}}$ distance of an object from the center of a lens
$\text{DC}$ direct current
$E$ electric field strength
$\epsilon$ emf (voltage) or Hall electromotive force
$\text{emf}$ electromotive force
$E$ energy of a single photon
$E$ nuclear reaction energy
$E$ relativistic total energy
$E$ total energy
${E}_{0}$ ground state energy for hydrogen
${E}_{0}$ rest energy
$\text{EC}$ electron capture
${E}_{\text{cap}}$ energy stored in a capacitor
$\text{Eff}$ efficiency—the useful work output divided by the energy input
${\text{Eff}}_{\text{C}}$ Carnot efficiency
${E}_{\text{in}}$ energy consumed (food digested in humans)
${E}_{\text{ind}}$ energy stored in an inductor
${E}_{\text{out}}$ energy output
$e$ emissivity of an object
${e}^{+}$ antielectron or positron
$\text{eV}$ electron volt
$\text{F}$ farad (unit of capacitance, a coulomb per volt)
$\text{F}$ focal point of a lens
$\mathbf{\text{F}}$ force
$F$ magnitude of a force
$F$ restoring force
${F}_{\text{B}}$ buoyant force
${F}_{\text{c}}$ centripetal force
${F}_{\text{i}}$ force input
${\mathbf{\text{F}}}_{\text{net}}$ net force
${F}_{\text{o}}$ force output
$\text{FM}$ frequency modulation
$f$ focal length
$f$ frequency
${f}_{0}$ resonant frequency of a resistance, inductance, and capacitance $\left(\text{RLC}\right)$ series circuit
${f}_{0}$ threshold frequency for a particular material (photoelectric effect)
${f}_{1}$ fundamental
${f}_{2}$ first overtone
${f}_{3}$ second overtone
${f}_{\text{B}}$ beat frequency
${f}_{\text{k}}$ magnitude of kinetic friction
${f}_{\text{s}}$ magnitude of static friction
$G$ gravitational constant
$G$ green quark color
$\overline{G}$ antigreen (magenta) antiquark color
$g$ acceleration due to gravity
$g$ gluons (carrier particles for strong nuclear force)
$h$ change in vertical position
$h$ height above some reference point
$h$ maximum height of a projectile
$h$ Planck's constant
$\text{hf}$ photon energy
${h}_{\text{i}}$ height of the image
${h}_{\text{o}}$ height of the object
$I$ electric current
$I$ intensity
$I$ intensity of a transmitted wave
$I$ moment of inertia (also called rotational inertia)
${I}_{0}$ intensity of a polarized wave before passing through a filter
${I}_{\text{ave}}$ average intensity for a continuous sinusoidal electromagnetic wave
${I}_{\text{rms}}$ average current
$\text{J}$ joule
$J/\text{Ψ}$ Joules/psi meson
$\text{K}$ kelvin
$k$ Boltzmann constant
$k$ force constant of a spring
${K}_{\alpha }$ x rays created when an electron falls into an $n=1$ shell vacancy from the $n=3$ shell
${K}_{\beta }$ x rays created when an electron falls into an $n=2$ shell vacancy from the $n=3$ shell
$\text{kcal}$ kilocalorie
$\text{KE}$ translational kinetic energy
$\text{KE}+\text{PE}$ mechanical energy
${\text{KE}}_{e}$ kinetic energy of an ejected electron
${\text{KE}}_{\text{rel}}$ relativistic kinetic energy
${\text{KE}}_{\text{rot}}$ rotational kinetic energy
$\overline{\text{KE}}$ thermal energy
$\text{kg}$ kilogram (a fundamental SI unit of mass)
$L$ angular momentum
$\text{L}$ liter
$L$ magnitude of angular momentum
$L$ self-inductance
$\ell$ angular momentum quantum number
${L}_{\alpha }$ x rays created when an electron falls into an $n=2$ shell from the $n=3$ shell
${L}_{e}$ electron total family number
${L}_{\mu }$ muon family total number
${L}_{\tau }$ tau family total number
${L}_{\text{f}}$ heat of fusion
${L}_{\text{f}}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\text{and}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}{L}_{\text{v}}$ latent heat coefficients
${\text{L}}_{\text{orb}}$ orbital angular momentum
${L}_{\text{s}}$ heat of sublimation
${L}_{\text{v}}$ heat of vaporization
${L}_{z}$ z - component of the angular momentum
$M$ angular magnification
$M$ mutual inductance
$\text{m}$ indicates metastable state
$m$ magnification
$m$ mass
$m$ mass of an object as measured by a person at rest relative to the object
$\text{m}$ meter (a fundamental SI unit of length)
$m$ order of interference
$m$ overall magnification (product of the individual magnifications)
$m\left({\text{}}^{A}\text{X}\right)$ atomic mass of a nuclide
$\text{MA}$ mechanical advantage
${m}_{\text{e}}$ magnification of the eyepiece
${m}_{e}$ mass of the electron
${m}_{\ell }$ angular momentum projection quantum number
${m}_{n}$ mass of a neutron
${m}_{\text{o}}$ magnification of the objective lens
$\text{mol}$ mole
${m}_{p}$ mass of a proton
${m}_{\text{s}}$ spin projection quantum number
$N$ magnitude of the normal force
$\text{N}$ newton
$\mathbf{\text{N}}$ normal force
$N$ number of neutrons
$n$ index of refraction
$n$ number of free charges per unit volume
${N}_{\text{A}}$ Avogadro's number
${N}_{\text{r}}$ Reynolds number
$\text{N}\cdot \text{m}$ newton-meter (work-energy unit)
$\text{N}\cdot \text{m}$ newtons times meters (SI unit of torque)
$\text{OE}$ other energy
$P$ power
$P$ power of a lens
$P$ pressure
$\mathbf{\text{p}}$ momentum
$p$ momentum magnitude
$p$ relativistic momentum
${\mathbf{\text{p}}}_{\text{tot}}$ total momentum
${\mathbf{\text{p}}}_{\text{tot}}^{\text{'}}$ total momentum some time later
${P}_{\text{abs}}$ absolute pressure
${P}_{\text{atm}}$ atmospheric pressure
${P}_{\text{atm}}$ standard atmospheric pressure
$\text{PE}$ potential energy
${\text{PE}}_{\text{el}}$ elastic potential energy
${\text{PE}}_{\text{elec}}$ electric potential energy
${\text{PE}}_{\text{s}}$ potential energy of a spring
${P}_{\text{g}}$ gauge pressure
${P}_{\text{in}}$ power consumption or input
${P}_{\text{out}}$ useful power output going into useful work or a desired, form of energy
$Q$ latent heat
$Q$ net heat transferred into a system
$Q$ flow rate—volume per unit time flowing past a point
$+Q$ positive charge
$-Q$ negative charge
$q$ electron charge
${q}_{p}$ charge of a proton
$q$ test charge
$\text{QF}$ quality factor
$R$ activity, the rate of decay
$R$ radius of curvature of a spherical mirror
$R$ red quark color
$\overline{R}$ antired (cyan) quark color
$R$ resistance
$\text{R}$ resultant or total displacement
$R$ Rydberg constant
$R$ universal gas constant
$r$ distance from pivot point to the point where a force is applied
$r$ internal resistance
${r}_{\perp }$ perpendicular lever arm
$r$ radius of a nucleus
$r$ radius of curvature
$r$ resistivity
$\text{r or rad}$ radiation dose unit
$\text{rem}$ roentgen equivalent man
$\text{rad}$ radian
$\text{RBE}$ relative biological effectiveness
$\text{RC}$ resistor and capacitor circuit
$\text{rms}$ root mean square
${r}_{n}$ radius of the n th H-atom orbit
${R}_{\text{p}}$ total resistance of a parallel connection
${R}_{\text{s}}$ total resistance of a series connection
${R}_{\text{s}}$ Schwarzschild radius
$S$ entropy
$\mathbf{\text{S}}$ intrinsic spin (intrinsic angular momentum)
$S$ magnitude of the intrinsic (internal) spin angular momentum
$S$ shear modulus
$S$ strangeness quantum number
$s$ quark flavor strange
$\text{s}$ second (fundamental SI unit of time)
$s$ spin quantum number
$\mathbf{\text{s}}$ total displacement
$\text{sec}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\theta$ secant
$\text{sin}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\theta$ sine
${s}_{z}$ z -component of spin angular momentum
$T$ period—time to complete one oscillation
$T$ temperature
${T}_{\text{c}}$ critical temperature—temperature below which a material becomes a superconductor
$T$ tension
$\text{T}$ tesla (magnetic field strength B )
$t$ quark flavor top or truth
$t$ time
${t}_{1/2}$ half-life—the time in which half of the original nuclei decay
$\text{tan}\phantom{\rule{0.20em}{0ex}}\theta$ tangent
$U$ internal energy
$u$ quark flavor up
$\text{u}$ unified atomic mass unit
$\mathbf{\text{u}}$ velocity of an object relative to an observer
${\mathbf{\text{u}}}^{\mathbf{\text{'}}}$ velocity relative to another observer
$V$ electric potential
$V$ terminal voltage
$\text{V}$ volt (unit)
$V$ volume
$\mathbf{\text{v}}$ relative velocity between two observers
$v$ speed of light in a material
$\mathbf{\text{v}}$ velocity
$\overline{\mathbf{\text{v}}}$ average fluid velocity
${V}_{\text{B}}-{V}_{\text{A}}$ change in potential
${\mathbf{\text{v}}}_{\text{d}}$ drift velocity
${V}_{\text{p}}$ transformer input voltage
${V}_{\text{rms}}$ rms voltage
${V}_{\text{s}}$ transformer output voltage
${\mathbf{\text{v}}}_{\text{tot}}$ total velocity
${v}_{\text{w}}$ propagation speed of sound or other wave
${\mathbf{\text{v}}}_{\text{w}}$ wave velocity
$W$ work
$W$ net work done by a system
$\text{W}$ watt
$w$ weight
${w}_{\text{fl}}$ weight of the fluid displaced by an object
${W}_{\text{c}}$ total work done by all conservative forces
${W}_{\text{nc}}$ total work done by all nonconservative forces
${W}_{\text{out}}$ useful work output
$X$ amplitude
$\text{X}$ symbol for an element
${\text{}}^{Z}{X}_{N}$ notation for a particular nuclide
$x$ deformation or displacement from equilibrium
$x$ displacement of a spring from its undeformed position
$x$ horizontal axis
${X}_{\text{C}}$ capacitive reactance
${X}_{\text{L}}$ inductive reactance
${x}_{\text{rms}}$ root mean square diffusion distance
$y$ vertical axis
$Y$ elastic modulus or Young's modulus
$Z$ atomic number (number of protons in a nucleus)
$Z$ impedance

#### Questions & Answers

What does mean ohms law imply
what is matter
Anything that occupies space
Kevin
Any thing that has weight and occupies space
Victoria
Anything which we can feel by any of our 5 sense organs
Suraj
Right
Roben
thanks
Suraj
what is a sulphate
Alo
Alo
the time rate of increase in velocity is called
acceleration
Emma
What is uniform velocity
Victoria
Greetings,users of that wonderful app.
how to solve pressure?
how do we calculate weight and eara eg an elefant that weight 2000kg has four fits or legs search of surface eara is 0.1m2(1metre square) incontact with the ground=10m2(g =10m2)
Cruz
P=F/A
Mira
can someone derive the formula a little bit deeper?
Bern
what is coplanar force?
what is accuracy and precision
How does a current follow?
follow?
akif
which one dc or ac current.
akif
how does a current following?
Vineeta
?
akif
AC current
Vineeta
AC current follows due to changing electric field and magnetic field.
akif
you guys are just saying follow is flow not follow please
Abubakar
ok bro thanks
akif
flows
Abubakar
but i wanted to understand him/her in his own language
akif
but I think the statement is written in English not any other language
Abubakar
my mean that in which form he/she written this,will understand better in this form, i write.
akif
ok
Abubakar
ok thanks bro. my mistake
Vineeta
u are welcome
Abubakar
what is a semiconductor
substances having lower forbidden gap between valence band and conduction band
akif
what is a conductor?
Vineeta
replace lower by higher only
akif
convert 56°c to kelvin
Abubakar
How does a current follow?
Vineeta
A semiconductor is any material whose conduction lies between that of a conductor and an insulator.
AKOWUAH
what is Atom? what is molecules? what is ions?
What is a molecule
Is a unit of a compound that has two or more atoms either of the same or different atoms
Justice
A molecule is the smallest indivisible unit of a compound, Just like the atom is the smallest indivisible unit of an element.
Rachel
what is a molecule?
Vineeta
what is a vector
A quantity that has both a magnitude AND a direction. E.g velocity, acceleration, force are all vector quantities. Hope this helps :)
deage
what is the difference between velocity and relative velocity?
Mackson
Velocity is the rate of change of displacement with time. Relative velocity on the other hand is the velocity observed by an observer with respect to a reference point.
Chuks
what do u understand by Ultraviolet catastrophe?
Rufai
A certain freely falling object, released from rest, requires 1.5seconds to travel the last 30metres before it hits the ground. (a) Find the velocity of the object when it is 30metres above the ground.
Mackson
A vector is a quantity that has both magnitude and direction
Rufus
the velocity Is 20m/s-2
Rufus
derivation of electric potential
V = Er = (kq/r^2)×r V = kq/r Where V: electric potential.
Chuks
what is the difference between simple motion and simple harmonic motion ?
syed
hi
Peace
hi
Rufus
hi
Chip
simple harmonic motion is a motion of tro and fro of simple pendulum and the likes while simple motion is a linear motion on a straight line.
Muinat
a body acceleration uniform from rest a 6m/s -2 for 8sec and decelerate uniformly to rest in the next 5sec,the magnitude of the deceleration is ?
The wording not very clear kindly
Moses
6
Leo
9.6m/s2
Jolly
the magnitude of deceleration =-9.8ms-2. first find the final velocity using the known acceleration and time. next use the calculated velocity to find the size of deceleration.
Mackson
wrong
Peace
-3.4m/s-2
Justice
Hi
Abj
Firstly, calculate final velocity of the body and then the deceleration. The final ans is,-9.6ms-2
Muinat
8x6= 48m/-2 use v=u + at 48÷5=9.6
Lawrence
can i define motion like this motion can be define as the continuous change of an object or position
Any object in motion will come to rest after a time duration. Different objects may cover equal distance in different time duration. Therefore, motion is defined as a change in position depending on time.
Chuks By By   By By By Rhodes  By Lakeima Roberts By