A        B        C        D        E        F        G        H        I        J-K        L        M      N        O        P        Q-R
S        T        U-W        Y-Z

Glossary M
M: Mega; one million. When referring to memory capacity, two to the twentieth power (1,048,576 in decimal notation).

Machine Language: Instructions that are written in binary form that a computer can execute directly. Also called object code and object language.

Maximum Operating Temperature: The maximum temperature at which an instrument or sensor can be safely operated.

Maximum Power Rating: The maximum power in watts that a device can safely handle.

Measurand: A physical quantity, property, or condition which is measured.

Megahertz (MHz): 1,000,000 Hertz; a unit of frequency.

Megasamples per second (MS/s): A sample rate unit equal to one million samples per second.

Melting Point: The temperature at which a substance transforms from a solid phase to a liquid phase.

Mica: A transparent mineral used as window material in high-temperature ovens.

Microamp: One millionth of an ampere, 10-6 amps, µA.

Microcomputer: A computer which is physically small. It can fit on top of or under a desk; based on LSI circuitry, computers of this type are now available with much of the power currently associated with minicomputer systems.

Micron: One millionth of a meter, 10-6 meters.

Microsecond (ms): A unit of time equivalent to 0.000001 seconds.

Millisecond (ms): A unit of time equivalent to 0.001 seconds.

Microvolt: One millionth of a volt, 10-6 volts.

Mil: One thousandth of an inch (.001").

Milliamp: One thousandth of an amp, 10-3 amps, symbol mA.

Millimeter: One thousandth of a meter, symbol mm.

Millivolt: Unit of electromotive force. It is the difference in potential required to make a current of 1 millampere flow through a resistance of 1 ohm; one thousandth of a volt, symbol mV.

Minor Scale Division: On an analog scale, the smallest indicated division of units on the scale.

Modem: Modulator/Demodulator. A device that transforms digital signals into audio tones for transmission over telephone lines, and does the reverse for reception.

Monostable: Circuit with two states. Only one state is stable.

MOS: Metal Oxide Semiconductor. Technology used in the manufacture of semiconductors.

MOSFET: Metal-Oxide-Silicon-Field-Effect-Transistor. See FET.

Motherboard: The pc board of a computer that contains the bus lines and edge connectors to accommodate other boards in the system. In a microcomputer, the motherboard contains the microprocessor and connectors for expansion boards.

Mounting Error: The error resultant from installing the transducer, both electrical and mechanical.

MSD (Most-Significant Digit): The leftmost digit of the display.

Multiples and sub-multiples of Units:

         Muliplication Factor                Prefix                Symbol
                    1012                                 tera                         T
                      109                                 giga                         G
                      105                                 mega                      M
                      103                                 kilo                          k
                      102                                 hecto                       h
                      101                                 deca                        da
                     10-1                                 deci                         d
                     10-2                                 centi                        c
                     10-3                                 milli                         m
                     10-6                                 micro                      µ
                     10-9                                 nano                       n
                  10-12                                  pico                        p
                  10-15                                  femto                      f         
                  10-18                                  atto                         a

Multiplex: A technique which allows different input (or output) signals to use the same lines at different times, controlled by an external signal. Multiplexing is used to save on wiring and I/O ports.

Multivibrator: A building block in which the output is either High or Low. There are three foms of multivibrator: Monostable, bi-stable and astable. The monostable has only one stable state, the bi-stable has two stable states and the astable is free-running (no stable states).