# 97% of People Can't Name All of These Physics Symbols. Can You?

By: Jacqueline Samaroo
Image: Original

Do you have enough energy to force the right answers out of this quiz?

It can be very complex, intricate, and oftentimes difficult to fully understand, physics is actually considered to be one of the most fundamental scientific disciplines. As a result of this, it is not surprising that physics, and the concepts that it deals with, form a foundation that other scientific fields are built upon.

Physics is a large and ever-expanding science and as a result, it deals with a wide array of physical quantities, concepts, and ideas, which are represented by various symbols. The symbols in this quiz consist of 40 of the most iconic symbols in physics that even non-scientists have heard of!

One of the reasons why there are so many different physics symbols in use today is because physics is actually one of the oldest sciences and academic disciplines in the world!  These symbols usually either come in the form of upper case or lower case characters from the Latin alphabet (a, b, c, etc.) or from the Greek alphabet (omega, kappa, sigma, etc.).

So, are you ready to discover the right answers in this quiz? Throw on your lab coat and let's get started!

In physics, electrical conductivity is most commonly represented by the symbol σ. Electrical conductivity refers to how strongly a given material opposes the flow of electric current.

In physics, force is most commonly represented by the symbol F. Force refers to any interaction that, when unopposed, will change the motion of an object.

In physics, magnetic field strength is most commonly represented by the symbol H. Magnetic field strength refers to a force field that is created by moving electrical charges and magnetic dipoles.

In physics, acceleration is most commonly represented by the symbol a. Acceleration refers to the rate of change of velocity of an object with respect to time.

In physics, potential energy is most commonly represented by the symbol U. Potential energy refers to the energy possessed by an object because of its position relative to other objects, stresses within itself, its electric charge, or other factors.

In physics, wavelength is most commonly represented by the symbol λ. Wavelength refers to the distance over which a wave's shape repeats.

In physics, torsion coefficient is most commonly represented by the symbol Κ. Torsion coefficient represents the ability of a bar or beam to resist torsion (twisting).

In physics, moment of inertia is most commonly represented by the symbol I. Moment of inertia refers to a body's tendency to resist angular acceleration, it is also known as angular mass or rotational inertia.

In physics, atomic number is most commonly represented by the symbol N. Atomic number refers to the number of protons found in the nucleus of an atom of a chemical element. It is used as an identifier for elements on the periodic table.

In physics, frequency is most commonly represented by the symbol v. Frequency refers to the number of occurrences of a repeating event per unit of time.

In physics, gamma radiation is most commonly represented by the symbol γ. Gamma radiation refers to electromagnetic radiation that arises from the radioactive decay of atomic nuclei.

In physics, wave function is most commonly represented by the symbol ψ. Wave function refers to a function that describes the wave properties of a particle.

In physics, distance is most commonly represented by the symbol d. Distance refers to any numerical measurement of how far apart objects are from each other.

In physics, Planck’s constant is most commonly represented by the symbol h. Planck’s constant refers to a physical constant that is the quantum of action, central in quantum mechanics. It is named after Max Planck, the German physicist who first recognized it.

In physics, moment of force is most commonly represented by the symbol M. Moment of force refers to the turning effect of a force. It is calculated using the force and the distance from a perpendicular reference point.

In physics, speed of sound is most commonly represented by the symbol c. Speed of sound refers to exactly what the name “sounds” like. It is the distance travelled per unit of time by a sound wave.

In physics, width is most commonly represented by the symbol w. Width refers to the distance from side to side, of an object that occurs at right angles to the length.

In physics, electric resistance is most commonly represented by the symbol Ω. Electric resistance refers to how a device or material reduces the electric current flow through it.

In physics, kinetic energy is most commonly represented by the symbol K. Kinetic energy refers to the energy that an object possesses due to its motion.

In physics, acceleration due to gravity is most commonly represented by the symbol g. Acceleration due to gravity refers to the acceleration of an object in a vacuum near the surface of the Earth.

In physics, capacitance is most commonly represented by the symbol C. Capacitance refers to the ratio of the change in an electric charge in a system, as it relates to the corresponding change in the system’s electric potential.

In physics, angular acceleration is most commonly represented by the symbol α. Angular acceleration simply refers to the rate of change of angular velocity.

In physics, time is most commonly represented by the symbol t. Time oftentimes is simply defined as being “what a clock shows/reads.” Time is sometimes referred to as the fourth dimension.

In physics, temperature is most commonly represented by the symbol T. Temperature refers to the physical quantity that expresses hot and cold.

In physics, density is most commonly represented by the symbol D. Density refers to the mass per unit volume of a substance.

In physics, permittivity is most commonly represented by the symbol ϵ. Permittivity refers to the measure of resistance that is encountered when forming an electric field in a particular medium.

In physics, damping ratio is most commonly represented by the symbol ζ. Damping ratio refers to the measure of how oscillations decay after an observed disturbance.

In physics, the gravitational constant is most commonly represented by the symbol G. The gravitational constant refers to the physical constant (6.674×10−11 m3⋅kg−1⋅s−2) that is used in the calculation of gravitational effects.

In physics, electric field is most commonly represented by the symbol E. Electric field simply refers to a field that surrounds electric charges.

In physics, luminosity is most commonly represented by the symbol L. Luminosity refers to the total amount of energy radiated by an object per unit of time.

In physics, impulse is most commonly represented by the symbol J. Impulse refers to the integral of a force over the time interval that it acts.

In physics, energy is most commonly represented by the symbol E. Energy refers to the capacity for doing work. The law of conservation of energy states that energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be converted from one form to another.

In physics, resistivity is most commonly represented by the symbol ρ. Resistivity refers to how strongly a given material opposes the flow of electric current.

In physics, area is most commonly represented by the symbol A. Area refers to the two dimensional extent of a shape or object.

In physics, pi is most commonly represented by the symbol π, which refers to the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter; approximately 3.14159.

In physics, entropy is most commonly represented by the symbol S. Entropy refers to the measure of the number of possible arrangements the atoms in a system can have.

In physics, magnetic flux density is most commonly represented by the symbol B. Magnetic flux density refers to the measure of the strength of a magnetic field at a given point.

In physics, heat is most commonly represented by the symbol Q. Heat refers to the energy that is transferred from a warmer substance or body to a cooler one.

In physics, electric potential is most commonly represented by the symbol ϕ. Electric potential refers to the amount of work needed to move a charge from a reference point to a specified point.

In physics, power is most commonly represented by the symbol P. Power refers to the rate of doing work; i.e. the amount of energy transferred per unit time.