-ics, -tics [-ac after i]

(Greek: a suffix that forms nouns and is usually used to form names of arts and sciences)

acoustics (pl) (noun) (plural in form, singular in use)
1. The science of sound and the phenomena of hearing: Elaine's doctor undertook specialized studies in acoustics in order to work more efficiently with elderly patients who were having hearing difficulties.
2. In physics, the study of sounds, including their productions, transmissions, and general effects: The laboratory for acoustics at the university was outfitted with the latest technology and equipment for analyzing audible and inaudible vibrations.

Acoustics often determines how well sounds can be heard in the structural features of a room, a hall, an auditorium, etc.

3. In architecture:
  • The sum of the qualities, as absence of echo or reverberation, that determine the value of a room or auditorium with respect to distinct hearing: The famous symphony conductor tested the acoustics of the newly build performance hall and announced that the sound was very good.
  • The science of planning and building an enclosure so that sound will be perfectly transmitted to the people who are in it: The newly hired engineer for the architecture firm had her engineering degree in acoustics and seemed the ideal candidate to work on the new performance hall.
4. The part of psychology dealing with hearing: Because his hearing was distorted after his emotional anxiety and inner turmoil, Jason was referred to a psychologist who specialized in medical acoustics.
The transmission of sounds in a room.
© ALL rights are reserved.

Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
for a list of additional Mickey Bach illustrations.

Pointing to a page about a acoustics Here is a special article about acoustics.

acoustoelectronics (s) (noun) (a plural form used as a singular)
The use of sound energy to create waves: "Acoustoelectronics is usually done with crystals or metals that react when bombarded with acoustic waves, and the processing of such waves prior to the reproduction of the original sounds."
acousto-optic (s) (noun), acousto-optics (pl)
The science and technology of the interactions between sound waves and light waves passing through solid materials; especially, as applied to the modulation and deflection of laser beams by ultrasonic waves; important in laser and holographic technologies: "Samuel Waters was intent on perfecting a system of acousto-optics to enable him to expand his holographic business which printed passes for the local bus system."
actinogenics
The science of radiation.
actinotherapeutics
The use of rays of light, particularly ultraviolet, for the treatment of diseases that are at or near the surface of the body.
actinotherapy, actinotherapeutics
1. Treatment of disease by means of light rays.
2. In dermatology, ultraviolet light therapy.
aeroacoustics (s) (noun) (a plural used as a singular)
The study of sound transmission through the air; especially, in terms of the effects of environmental noise from machines, vehicles, aircraft, etc.: "The planning of a new airport near the city involved a comprehensive aeroacoustics to determine the impact of the sounds of the aircraft on living conditions for people who are living in the area."
aerobatics
Spectacular feats done with an airplane; such as loops, rolls, etc; stunt flying.
aerobics
1. An active exercise program done; for example, with music, often in a class.
2. A system of physical conditioning to enhance circulatory and respiratory efficiency that involves vigorous, sustained exercise; such as, jogging, swimming, or cycling; thereby improving the body's use of oxygen.
aerodonetics
The science of soaring in a glider.
aerodontics, aerodontia
1. That branch of dentistry which is concerned with effects on the teeth of those who are flying at high altitudes; either at increased or reduced atmospheric pressure .
2. A branch of dentistry concerned with the prevention and treatment of aerodontalgia.
aerodynamics
1. The study of air and other gases in motion, the forces that set them in motion, and the results of such motions.
2. The study of the effects of air in motion on an object; either objects moving through air; such as, aircraft or automobiles, or stationary objects affected by moving air; for example, bridges or tall buildings.

The two primary forces in aerodynamics are lift and drag.

Lift refers to, usually upward, forces perpendicular to the direction of motion of an object traveling through the air; for example, airplane wings are designed so that their movement through the air creates an area of low pressure above the ling and an area of high pressure beneath it. The pressure difference produces the lift needed for flight which is typical of airfoil design.

Drag forces are parallel and opposite to the object's direction of motion and are caused largely by friction.

Large wings can create a significant amount of lift, but they do so at the expense of generating a great deal of drag. Extended "spoilers" on aircraft wings make the the wings capable of high lift even at low speeds; so, low landing speeds can still provide enough lift for a gentle "touchdown".

aerographics
The branch of meteorology that studies and describes atmospheric conditions.
aeromagnetics
The scientific study of the earth's magnetic characteristics as measured from the air.
aeromechanics
The scientific study of air and other gases in motion or in equilibrium, including the two distinct branches of aerodynamics and aerostatics.