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  1. #1
    ALAMAS is offline Newbie
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    Cool When to add a definite article?

    Hello,

    I have a quick question. Which of the expressions below is correct?

    1) The effect of temperature and density on the performance of sensors
    2) The effect of the temperature and density on the performance of sensors

    Thank you very much!

  2. #2
    Leandro-Z's Avatar
    Leandro-Z is offline Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    Well. I don`t know exactly. I would say the first but just because it appeals to my ear.

  3. #3
    Abstract Idea is offline Key Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    ----- I am not an ESL teacher -----

    Quote Originally Posted by ALAMAS View Post
    I have a quick question. Which of the expressions below is correct?

    1) The effect of temperature and density on the performance of sensors
    2) The effect of the temperature and density on the performance of sensors

    Thank you very much!
    Depending on what you want to say ...

    The effect of temperature and density on the performance of the sensors is ...
    The effects of temperature and density on the performance of the sensors are ...
    The effects of the (air?) temperature and (some fluid?) density on the performance of the sensors are ...
    The effect of the local temperature and air density on the performance of the sensor is ...
    The sensors temperature and density have/cause/permit ...

    These are just some suggestions.

  4. #4
    bertietheblue is offline Senior Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    Quote Originally Posted by ALAMAS View Post
    Hello,

    I have a quick question. Which of the expressions below is correct?

    1) The effect of temperature and density on the performance of sensors
    2) The effect of the temperature and density on the performance of sensors

    Thank you very much!
    1) You are talking generally, eg in an essay question: 'Discuss the effects of temperature and density on the performance of sensors'.
    2) You are talking specifically, eg 'the (current) temperature and density' or 'the temperature and (air) density in this room'.

    In most cases though, the article would, I think, be optional here. I've just reworded below to make a complete sentence, but is there much difference in meaning between:

    'What effect do temperature and density have on performance?'

    and

    'What effect do the temperature and density have on performance?'?

  5. #5
    tedtmc is offline Key Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    1) The effect of temperature and density on the performance of sensors
    2) The effect of the temperature and density on the performance of sensors
    (1) is correct. It refers to temperature and density in general, so no article is required. 'Effect' could take an 's'.

    not a teacher

  6. #6
    bertietheblue is offline Senior Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    Quote Originally Posted by bertietheblue View Post
    1)
    In most cases though, the article would, I think, be optional here. I've just reworded below to make a complete sentence, but is there much difference in meaning between:

    'What effect do temperature and density have on performance?'

    and

    'What effect do the temperature and density have on performance?'?
    I'm just revisiting this. I'm not sure what temperature and density refer to here so I'm going to use a similar example:

    'What effect do air temperature and pressure have on performance?'

    'What effect do the air temperature and pressure have on performance?'

    Is there a suggestion that in the first the temperature and pressure are subject to variation? The second sentence seems to me possible in any situation, whether or not we are talking about a specific (eg current or fixed) temperature and pressure. Any thoughts?

  7. #7
    ALAMAS is offline Newbie
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    Quote Originally Posted by bertietheblue View Post
    I'm just revisiting this. I'm not sure what temperature and density refer to here so I'm going to use a similar example:

    'What effect do air temperature and pressure have on performance?'

    'What effect do the air temperature and pressure have on performance?'

    Is there a suggestion that in the first the temperature and pressure are subject to variation? The second sentence seems to me possible in any situation, whether or not we are talking about a specific (eg current or fixed) temperature and pressure. Any thoughts?
    Thank you all very much for your help.
    My high school teacher has told me that "the" needs to be always added before any physical properties, such as temperature, density, humidity, pressure. So, When I write about the effects of physical properties on the performance of sensors, I got this question.

    When we talk about the temperature, I think we always say "What is the temperatue?" but not "What is tempeature?"

    So, I thought "the" is always needed before any physical properties.
    Any comment would be very appriciated!!

  8. #8
    bertietheblue is offline Senior Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    Quote Originally Posted by ALAMAS View Post

    When we talk about the temperature, I think we always say "What is the temperatue?" but not "What is tempeature?"

    What is the temperature? - specific ('what is the temperature now?') so 'the'
    What is temperature? - a general question asking what we mean by 'temperature' (a possible question in an introductory science book but unlikely otherwise)
    Last edited by Tdol; 08-Jul-2010 at 04:50. Reason: fixing quote

  9. #9
    tedtmc is offline Key Member
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    Re: When to add a definite article?

    In science you usually talk about the effect(s) of varying temperatures and densities on something to study (through experiments) how something behaves. So, it is general and not specific, hence no article is required.

    not a teacher

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