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Chapter 2


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Science
An endeavor to discover how nature works and to use that knowledge to make predictions about what is likely to happen in nature.
Scientific Hypothesis
A possible and testable explanation of what is observed in nature or in the results of experments
Data
Information needed to answer questions
Model
an approximate representation or simulation of a system being studied.
Scientific Theory
A well-tested and widely accepted scientific hypothesis or a group of related hypotheses
Peer Review
When scientists report their methods/models/results/reasoning to other scientists to examine and criticize
Scientifc Law
a well-tested and widely accepted description of what we find happening over and over again in the same way in nature.
Tentative science
preliminary results that capture news headlines but are controversial because they have not beenwidely tested and accepted by peer review.
Relaible science
Data, hypothesis, modes, theories and laws that are widely accepted by all scientists in that field of study
Unreliable science
Hypthesis that has not gone under the rigors of widespread peer review
Matter
The stuff that makes up life and its environment
Element
Fundamental type of matter with unique properties, can't chemically break down more
Compound
Combination of multiple elements and found in specific proportions based on the material
Atom
Smallest unit of matter an element can be broken down into while still retaining its chemical properties
Atomic Theory
The idea that elements are made of atoms
Nuetron
No electrical charge
Proton
Atoms that have a positive electrical charge
Electron
Small subatomic particle with a negative charge, determines how elements react
Nucleus
Each atom consists of an extremely small and dense center called its nucleus
Atomic number
number, equal to the number of protons in the nucleus of its atom.
Mass number
The mass of an atom
Isotope
Forms of an element that has the same atomic number but different mass numbers
Molecule
A combination of two or more atoms of the same or different elements held together by chemical bonds
Ion
an atom or groups of atoms with one or more net positive or negative electrical charges.
Acidity
The measure of how hydrogen ions within a liquid will affect its environment
pH
Measure of hydrogen ions in a liquid, measure of acidity
Chemical formula
show the number of each type of atom or ion in a compound.
Organic compound
Contain carbon bonds (excluding CO2 and CO)
Inorganic compounds
Don't contain carbon
Cells
The fundamental structural and functional units of life
Genes
certain sequences of nucleotides found within DNA
Trait
A characteristic passed on from your parents to offspring during reproduction in an animal or plant
Chromosome
a special DNA molecule together with a number of proteins.
Matter quality
a measure of how useful a form of matter is to humans as a resource,
High quality matter
Highly concentrated, typically found near the earths surface
Low quality matter
Not highly concentrated and is located deep underground or dispersed in the ocean or atmosphere
Physical change
molecules of matter are arranged in different spatial patterns
Chemical change
Change in chemical composition of the substances involved
Conservation of Matter
Wenever matter undergoes a phsical or chemical change, no atoms are created or destroyed
Energy
The ability to apply a force over a distance (work) or transfer heat
Kinetic energy
Amount of energy determined by how fast an object with a certain mass is traveling
Heat
the total kinetic energy of all moving atoms, ions, or molecules within a given substance.
Electromagnetic radiation
Energy traveling in the form of a wave asa result of changes in elctrical and magnetic fields
Potential energy
stored energy that has potential use
Fossil fuels
Fuels formed millions of years ago as layers of the decaying remains of ancient plants and animals that were exposed to heat
Energy quality
a measure of an energy source’s capacity to do useful work.
High quality energy
Energy that is concentrated and has a high capacity to do useful work
Low quality energy
Energy that is dispered and has little capacity to do useful work
First Law of Thermodynamics
When energy changes forms, no energy is created or distroyed
Second Law of Thermodynamics
When energy changes forms, it always ends up with less-quality/usable energy than it started with
System
A set of components that function and interact in some regular way
Input
The matter/energy/information that is put into the system
Flows
When matter or energy enters a system at certain rates
Feedback
Any process that increases or decreases a change in a system
Feedback loop
The process when the output of a system is fed back as an input to the same system
Positive feedback loop
When a change in a system causes the system to further change in the same direction
Negative feedback loop
When a change in a system cayses the sytem to change in the opposite direction from which it's moving
Time delay
Delay between an input of a feedback stimulus and the response
Tipping point
A threshold that causes a fundamental shift in the behavior of a system
Synergy
When two or more processes interact so that the combined effort is greater than the individual effort combined
Radioactive decay
Whe unstable atomic nuclei emit release fast moving chunks of matter or high-energy radiation
Nuclear Fusion
The combination of small, lightweight atomic nuclei to release energy (what the sun does, not practically achieved by humans)
Nuclear Fission
The splitting of large, heavy atoms to release energy (what current nuclear power plants do)
Nuclear change
Change in the nuclei of an atom: radioactive decay, fission, or fusion