An ever-growing reference

  • 27th December 2013
  • (last updated 04th April 2014)
  • neal

Remember that physical quantities (Energy, mass, Force, etc) are displayed in italic, while units (metres, kilograms, seconds, etc) are not.

Symbol Meaning Unit Base Units Equation Comments
Ek Kinetic Energy J (joules) 1 J = 1 kg m2s-2 Ek = ½ mv2
Ei Internal Energy J (joules) 1 J = 1 kg m2s-2
Eg Gravitational Energy J (joules) 1 J = 1 kg m2s-2 Eg = mgh
F Force N (newtons) 1 N = 1 kg m-1s-1 F = ma
  • Newton's 2nd law of motion
  • Fa (force is proportional to acceleration & mass is the constant of proportionality)
W Work J (joules) W = Fd

W = Δ Ek + Δ Ei + Δ E...
  • work is the transfer of energy from one object to another by a force
  • WF (work is proportional to force)
  • Wd (work is proportional to distance)
P Power W (watts) 1 W = 1 J s-1 P = E / t
Fg Gravitational Force N (newtons) 1 N = 1 kg m-1s-1 Fg = gm
  • Newton's 2nd law of motion
  • Fgm (gravitational force is proportional to mass and g is the constant of proportionality)
  • g (constant of proportionality) is in m s-2