Natural units

  • in physics, natural units are physical units of measurement based only on universal physical constants. for example, the elementary charge e is a natural unit of electric charge, and the speed of light c is a natural unit of speed. a purely natural system of units has all of its units defined in this way, and usually such that the numerical values of the selected physical constants in terms of these units are exactly 1. these constants are then typically omitted from mathematical expressions of physical laws, and while this has the apparent advantage of simplicity, it may entail a loss of clarity due to the loss of information for dimensional analysis. it precludes the interpretation of an expression in terms of fundamental physical constants, such as e and c, unless it is known which units (in dimensionful units) the expression is supposed to have. in this case, the reinsertion of the correct powers of e, c, etc., can be uniquely determined.[1][2]

  • introduction
  • notation and use
  • choosing constants to normalize
  • electromagnetism units
  • systems of natural units
  • see also
  • notes and references
  • external links

In physics, natural units are physical units of measurement based only on universal physical constants. For example, the elementary charge e is a natural unit of electric charge, and the speed of light c is a natural unit of speed. A purely natural system of units has all of its units defined in this way, and usually such that the numerical values of the selected physical constants in terms of these units are exactly 1. These constants are then typically omitted from mathematical expressions of physical laws, and while this has the apparent advantage of simplicity, it may entail a loss of clarity due to the loss of information for dimensional analysis. It precludes the interpretation of an expression in terms of fundamental physical constants, such as e and c, unless it is known which units (in dimensionful units) the expression is supposed to have. In this case, the reinsertion of the correct powers of e, c, etc., can be uniquely determined.[1][2]