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A clearer approach for defining unit systems.

Quincey, P; Brown, R J C (2017) A clearer approach for defining unit systems. Metrologia, 54 (4). pp. 454-460.

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We present the SI and other unit systems, including cgs-em and cgs-es, in a framework whereby a system of fully independent base units is modified by conventions designed to simplify the equations that are used within each system. We propose that the radian can be seen as one of the independent base units whose status is modified in the SI and other unit systems for this purpose.
This framework clarifies how different unit systems are interrelated, and identifies the key pieces of information that are needed to define both a unit system and the equations that are to be used with it. Specifically, these are the size of the base units in the independent system, together with sufficient equations to identify all the conventions adopted by the particular unit system.
It is also proposed that the Gaussian unit system is best seen as identical to cgs-es, but with the B and H symbols in equations used to represent 'relativistic' versions of B and H, which should properly be treated as different quantities. These different versions of B and H can similarly be used within the SI, with many of the advantages of the Heaviside-Lorentz system.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Unit systems, SI, radian, Gaussian units
Subjects: Environmental Measurement
Environmental Measurement > Air Quality and Airborne Particulates
Divisions: Chemical, Medical & Environmental Science
Identification number/DOI: 10.1088/1681-7575/aa7160
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2018 14:27
URI: http://eprintspublications.npl.co.uk/id/eprint/7607

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