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Angular momentum Units . a very basic question

  1. Oct 23, 2014 #1
    I have a very basic questions about units for angular momentum.

    The measure is in kg m^2/s

    Angular velocity is in radians/s and therefore radians do not appear in the units.

    Here is my question, can we leave this in degees/s? Sure its not used but is it wrong?

    If we are dealing with something like tangential velocity for example, angular velocity has to be in radians/s because a linear measure like tangential velocity cannot have degrees as part of the units. It would be wrong to do so.

    However, in the case of angular momentum, we are measuring an angular quantity. Having degrees in the units should be acceptable. Yes, that never happens but is there a scientific reason that would make it wrong to have degrees in angular momentum?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 23, 2014 #2

    SteamKing

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    Degrees are technically treated as units, unlike radians which are unitless due to their definition. If you use angular momentum values calculated using degrees, you should indicate the proper units in case these numbers are to be used in other calculations, where radians would normally be used.
     
  4. Oct 23, 2014 #3
    Thank you very much Streamking! That's what I thought, so degrees are technically correct as long as they are included in the units. Just wanted to confirm that since I don't see it used anywhere.
     
  5. Oct 23, 2014 #4

    SteamKing

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    BTW, the handle is SteamKing, not StreamKing. And you're welcome.
     
  6. Oct 23, 2014 #5
    opps. Sorry about that SteamKing. Thanks again!
     
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