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      06-03-2012, 09:24 PM   #87
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Originally Posted by swamp2 View Post
I certainly was not questioning your background but imprecise language.

Not being able to measure something directly and that thing being only a mathematical or derived quantity is not the same thing. Power is no less derived nor mathematical than torque. Torque is a force acting at a distance, thus you have to measure the force not the torque. In addition you can measure power through luminous intensity, temperature change, voltage and current, etc. Power is defined by equations but it is a very real and useful physical quantity.

We may be into semantics at this point...

I am sorry if I seemed imprecise, it was my best effort to vulgarize.

All I can say is that throughout my engineering education and career, I have been taught and trained with the notion that energy is an indirectly observed quantity, a mathematical concept. Albeit a very powerful concept, one that allows the simplification of very complex physical models. Energy itself remains elusive, you cannot isolate energy in the real world. As you say, speed, temperature, distance, gravitation, electric charge, force, radiation, pressure, chemical links can all be correlated to energy levels. But what is energy? A very clever man went as far as deducing that even mass itself can be correlated to energy… but this could lead to metaphysical discussions not appropriate for a car forum .

Hence, the same can be said of power, as it is the rate of change of energy.

Torque can be seen as the force component of the Newtonian equations in the angular referential, very real and measurable. And since we are on the topic of semantics and precision of language, I need to point out that torque is NOT "a force acting at a distance". Torque is fundamentally a twisting force, better represented as a pair of equal opposing linear forces acting at a perpendicular distance from each other .

I guess there are many different schools of thought and it’s a free world, so everyone is entitled to believe what they want .

Last edited by CanAutM3; 06-06-2012 at 01:26 PM.