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The
MKS system of units is a physical system of units that expresses any given measurement using fundamental units of the
metreThe metre , symbol m, is the base unit of length in the International System of Units . Originally intended to be one tenmillionth of the distance from the Earth's equator to the North Pole , its definition has been periodically refined to reflect growing knowledge of metrology...
,
kilogramThe kilogram or kilogramme , also known as the kilo, is the base unit of mass in the International System of Units and is defined as being equal to the mass of the International Prototype Kilogram , which is almost exactly equal to the mass of one liter of water...
, and/or
secondThe second is a unit of measurement of time, and is the International System of Units base unit of time. It may be measured using a clock....
(MKS).
Historically the MKS system of units succeeded the cgs system of units and laid the blueprint for the
International System of UnitsThe International System of Units is the modern form of the metric system and is generally a system of units of measurement devised around seven base units and the convenience of the number ten. The older metric system included several groups of units...
, which now serves as the international standard. Therefore the exact composition of the MKS system is a historical issue. As a matter of historical record the MKS system incorporated fundamental units other than the
metreThe metre , symbol m, is the base unit of length in the International System of Units . Originally intended to be one tenmillionth of the distance from the Earth's equator to the North Pole , its definition has been periodically refined to reflect growing knowledge of metrology...
,
kilogramThe kilogram or kilogramme , also known as the kilo, is the base unit of mass in the International System of Units and is defined as being equal to the mass of the International Prototype Kilogram , which is almost exactly equal to the mass of one liter of water...
, and
secondThe second is a unit of measurement of time, and is the International System of Units base unit of time. It may be measured using a clock....
in addition to derived units. An incomplete list of the fundamental and derived units appears below. Since the MKS system of units never had a governing body to rule on a standard definition, the list of units depended on different conventions at different times.
 cycle (This dimensionless quantity became synonymous with the term "cycle per second" as an abbreviation. This circumstance confused the exact definition of the term cycle. Therefore the term "cycle per metre" became illdefined. The cycle did not become an SI unit.)
 cycle per second
The cycle per second was a oncecommon unit of frequency.With the organization of the International System of Units in 1960, the cycle per second was officially replaced by the hertz, or reciprocal second—i.e. the cycle in 'cycle per second' was dropped...
 cycle per metre (This measure of wavenumber
In the physical sciences, the wavenumber is a property of a wave, its spatial frequency, that is proportional to the reciprocal of the wavelength. It is also the magnitude of the wave vector...
became illdefined due to the abbreviation of "cycle per second" as "cycle".)
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