Browse Definitions :

Do you capitalize units of measurement named for people?

Writing for Business

Which is correct?
The ______  is the International System of Units’ (SI) standard unit of power. It’s named for James Watt, a Scottish inventor and mechanical engineer who developed the idea of horsepower.
a. Watt
b. watt

Answer: b.

Explanation:
This was kind of a trick question. You’d probably expect units of measurement named for people to be capitalized but that’s not the case. Like other units of measurement, “watt” is only capitalized as the symbol, “W.”

Here are a few other examples:

The tesla (T), the standard unit of magnetic flux density, is named for Nikola Tesla.

The newton (N), the SI unit of force, is named for Sir Isaac Newton.

The pascal (Pa), the unit of pressure, is named for Blaise Pascal.

The henry (H), the Standard International (SI) unit of inductance, is named for Joseph Henry.

 *****

NIST provides Essentials of the SI: Base & derived units.

Follow me on Twitter @tao_of_grammar

Dig Deeper on Writing for Business

Networking
  • SD-WAN security

    SD-WAN security refers to the practices, protocols and technologies protecting data and resources transmitted across ...

  • net neutrality

    Net neutrality is the concept of an open, equal internet for everyone, regardless of content consumed or the device, application ...

  • network scanning

    Network scanning is a procedure for identifying active devices on a network by employing a feature or features in the network ...

Security
  • virtual firewall

    A virtual firewall is a firewall device or service that provides network traffic filtering and monitoring for virtual machines (...

  • cloud penetration testing

    Cloud penetration testing is a tactic an organization uses to assess its cloud security effectiveness by attempting to evade its ...

  • cloud workload protection platform (CWPP)

    A cloud workload protection platform (CWPP) is a security tool designed to protect workloads that run on premises, in the cloud ...

CIO
  • Regulation SCI (Regulation Systems Compliance and Integrity)

    Regulation SCI (Regulation Systems Compliance and Integrity) is a set of rules adopted by the U.S. Securities and Exchange ...

  • strategic management

    Strategic management is the ongoing planning, monitoring, analysis and assessment of all necessities an organization needs to ...

  • IT budget

    IT budget is the amount of money spent on an organization's information technology systems and services. It includes compensation...

HRSoftware
  • ADP Mobile Solutions

    ADP Mobile Solutions is a self-service mobile app that enables employees to access work records such as pay, schedules, timecards...

  • director of employee engagement

    Director of employee engagement is one of the job titles for a human resources (HR) manager who is responsible for an ...

  • digital HR

    Digital HR is the digital transformation of HR services and processes through the use of social, mobile, analytics and cloud (...

Customer Experience
  • chatbot

    A chatbot is a software or computer program that simulates human conversation or "chatter" through text or voice interactions.

  • martech (marketing technology)

    Martech (marketing technology) refers to the integration of software tools, platforms, and applications designed to streamline ...

  • transactional marketing

    Transactional marketing is a business strategy that focuses on single, point-of-sale transactions.

Close