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vitesse de propagation du son

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by Gat - Vae Soli, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. Gat - Vae Soli Junior Member

    French
    Hi there,

    Could anyone help me with the following:
    "La vitesse de propagation du son dépend de la nature du matériau"

    the sound propagation speed / velocity (what's the difference?)
    the speed / velocity propagation of sound
    ... or just sound speed / velocity

    Thank you all...
    All the best for 2010
    Gat - Vae Soli
     
  2. barax Junior Member

    French
    In acoustics, the sound propagation speed and velocity are the same thing.
     
  3. theironduck Senior Member

    Portishead, UK
    English (British)
    I would just say "the speed of sound depends on the nature of the material".

    Speed and velocity are not the same thing. Speed is a scalar quantity, i.e. it has only a magnitude (m/s), while velocity is a vector quantity, i.e. it has a magnitude and a direction.
     
  4. Gat - Vae Soli Junior Member

    French
    Thanks a lot.
    You are making things simple.
    Now, what's the difference between "the speed of sound" (your suggestion) and "sound speed".
    Gat
     
  5. theironduck Senior Member

    Portishead, UK
    English (British)
    The difference is that no-one ever says "sound speed" ;)
     
  6. Gat - Vae Soli Junior Member

    French
    (that was... a quick answer)
    So you mean I should not trust Google?
    Gat
     
  7. theironduck Senior Member

    Portishead, UK
    English (British)
    Perhaps I was a little too quick. The usual way to refer to "La vitesse [de propagation] du son " in English is "the speed of sound". However, if you wish to avoid repetition of that formula you could use "sound speed", e.g. "The speed of sound depends on the type of material. In water the sound speed is...". That said, you would not say "The Space Shuttle can fly faster than the sound speed". Sorry if that's confusing.
     
  8. Gat - Vae Soli Junior Member

    French
    It is indeed getting a bit confusing.
    I'll just stick to what you suggested in the first place and try to go ahead and finish my translation as fast as possible... (hopefully faster than the speed of light, but that's another story!)
    Gat
     

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