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Homework Help: Elasticity vs Young's modulus

  1. Apr 22, 2013 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    This is a rather conceptual question, but is there a difference between elasticity and young's modulus? I know that the young's modulus can also be stated as the modulus of elasticity, but is it incorrect to say that a substance with a higher young's modulus has a low elasticity? Or should it be that a substance with a very high young's modulus has high elasticity? Are they merely synonyms?

    2. Relevant equations
    Young's modulus = stress/strain

    3. The attempt at a solution
    I am assuming that a high young's modulus equates to lower elasticity.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 22, 2013 #2
    Welcome to Physics Forums!!!

    Elasticity refers to the ability of a material to fully recover its undeformed geometry when the stress is removed. For an elastic material, the stress can be a linear function of the strain, or it can be a non-linear function of the strain. Hooke's law, involving Young's modulus, describes the behavior of any material exhibiting a linear stress-strain relationship in the limit of small strains.
  4. Apr 22, 2013 #3
    Hi, thanks for the response and warm welcome!

    Is this ability to recover to its undeformed geometry hindered by an increase in Young's modulus?
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2013
  5. Apr 22, 2013 #4
    If you are referring to the Young's modulus increasing as a function of strain, then this question makes no sense since, by definition, Young's modulus applies only to materials exhibiting linear stress-strain behavior. If you are asking whether, if you have two linear elastic materials featuring different Young's moduli, will the magnitude of the Young's modulus influence their ability to recover elastically, the answer is no.
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