And it's obsolete; the outwardly similar International System of units has replaced it. We need only a few basic units like length, time, and mass to write the equations of physics. Then the remaining units derive from this set. In the English and Metric systems, those basic units were all based on changeable features of the world around us.
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The French first tried to define their meter as one ten-millionth of the distance from the equator to the North Pole. But that length varies slightly over time. We needed to base our measure of distance on something less changeable.
Since , the standard has been the distance that light travels during a certain short instant. No more standard rulers or meter-sticks! But, for the unit of mass, we do still use a standard one-kilogram object. That remains a problem because, when the various standards are gathered together and compared, tiny variances show up. The English and Metric Systems were especially awkward in their energy units. The calorie and Btu were both based on the energy needed to heat water under certain conditions.
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Around , we realized that heating and working are equivalent. After that, the unit of energy could be expressed as a force acting through a distance. No more calories or Btu's in the International System. And, until , we based time on the length of a year. But it turned out that each new circuit of Earth around the sun takes a fraction of a second longer. We finally adopted the cesium clock standard.
Now a second is the time it takes for energy states of a cesium atom to make nine-point-however-many billion oscillations. Today, our measurements all rest on this International System. Condition: New. Seller Inventory NEW Never used!.
Scientific Unit Conversion. A Practical Guide to Metrication
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Brand new Book. Softcover reprint of the original 2nd ed. Seller Inventory KNV Seller Inventory LIE Softcover reprint of the origina. Francois Cardarelli. Publisher: Springer , This specific ISBN edition is currently not available. View all copies of this ISBN edition:.
Synopsis About this title Expanded, revised and updated here, this detailed guide is truly unique, giving accurate metric equivalents and conversion factors for no fewer than 10, scientific units with detailed descriptions of over 2, Language Notes : Text: English translation "About this title" may belong to another edition of this title. Buy New Learn more about this copy. Other Popular Editions of the Same Title.
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