# 1.1.1 Physical Quantities

### What is a Physical Quantity?

• Speed and velocity are examples of physical quantities; both can be measured
• All physical quantities consist of a numerical magnitude and a unit
• In physics, every letter of the alphabet (and most of the Greek alphabet) is used to represent these physical quantities
• These letters, without any context, are meaningless
• To represent a physical quantity, it must contain both a numerical value and the unit in which it was measured
• The letter v be used to represent the physical quantities of velocity, volume or voltage
• The units provide the context as to what v refers to
• If v represents velocity, the unit would be m s–1
• If v represents volume, the unit would be m3
• If v represents voltage, the unit would be V

### Estimating Physical Quantities

• There are important physical quantities to learn in physics
• It is useful to know these physical quantities, they are particularly useful when making estimates
• A few examples of useful quantities to memorise are given in the table below (this is by no means an exhaustive list) ### Author: Ashika

Ashika graduated with a first-class Physics degree from Manchester University and, having worked as a software engineer, focused on Physics education, creating engaging content to help students across all levels. Now an experienced GCSE and A Level Physics and Maths tutor, Ashika helps to grow and improve our Physics resources.
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