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factor, in arithmetic, any number that divides a given number evenly, i.e., without any remainder. The factors of 12 are 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 12. Similarly in algebra, any one of the algebraic expressions multiplied by another to form a product is a factor of that product, e.g., *a*+*b* and *a*-*b* are factors of *a*^{2}-*b* ^{2}, since (*a*+*b*)(*a*-*b*)=*a*^{2}-*b*^{2}. In general, if *r* is a root of a polynomial equation *f*(*x*)=0, then (*x*-*r*) is a factor of the polynomial *f*(*x*).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia Copyright © 2004.

Licensed from Columbia University Press

Licensed from Columbia University Press

Matching a specific air temperature (columns) with a wind speed (rows) will show the wind chill *elipsis**elipsis*

Matching a specific air temperature (columns) with a wind speed (rows) will show the wind chill *elipsis**elipsis*

Learn more about wind chill with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

In multiplication, one of two or more numerical or algebraic components of a product. A whole number's factors are the whole numbers that divide evenly into it (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 12 are factors of 12). To factor a counting number means to break it down into its prime number factors. To factor a polynomial is to find its prime polynomial factors, a basic procedure for solving algebraic equations. According to the fundamental theorem of arithmetic, the prime factorization of any number or polynomial is unique.

Learn more about factor with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.

1. In tropospheric radio propagation, the ratio of the effective Earth radius to the actual Earth radius.

Note: The k-factor is approximately 4/3.

2. In ionospheric radio propagation, a correction factor that (a) is applied in calculations related to curved layers, and (b) is a function of distance and the real height of ionospheric reflection.

3. In laser diode technology, it describes the exceed spontaneous emission noise in gain-guided lasers.

Source: From Federal Standard 1037C and from MIL-STD-188

The flow rate of a sprinkler is given by $dot\; m\_w\; =\; Ksqrt\; p$, where p is the operating pressure, usually given in bar. K is the K-factor commonly given in units of $L/min/sqrttext\{bar\}$.

The units conveniently allow $dot\; m\_w$ to stand for either the mass flow rate in kg/min or the volumetric flow rate in L/min.

It is a factor to find the effective length of the column in structural engineering.

During bending the inner surface of the bend is subjected to compression while the outer surface is subjected to tension. However there is a layer in between which is free from any forces and thus its length remains the same. This is called the neutral axis (N.A ). The radius of this layer of metal is called the neutral bend arc radius (NBAR )and is defined as the inside bend radius plus a percentage(K-factor ) of the metal thickness.

- NBAR = BR + (T × K-factor)

The K-Factor (K) depends on the material, the type of bending operation (coining, air-bending), the ratio of the bend radius to the metal thickness (R/T) and is typically between 0.3 to 0.5. For most types of steels it is around 0.33 to 0.4

The next step is to determine how many days' supply remain in the tank once it has been filled. From the total tank capacity, you can subtract a number of reserve gallons which depends, of course, upon the size of the tank. Then multiply the number of gallons of usable fuel by the "K" factor, and you have what is known as the Degree Days of Usable Fuel. Using this figure, oil companies can arrive at the degree day of your next scheduled delivery.

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Last updated on Thursday September 11, 2008 at 11:26:51 PDT (GMT -0700)

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