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Jun 26, 2011 by katrina
What is the Difference Between Mass and Volume?
Science is one broad subject that taps on an array of several other subjects such as math, literature and language. It also requires certain skills in order for the subject not to be undermined and be fully understood, as one goes through its concepts one after the other. Measurement is one subtopic that definitely requires a keen sense of sight, along with an exceptional coordination with the hand. It is in the concept of measuring that mass and volume is highly acquainted with. While these two are kinds of measurements, they bear differences, which make them equally vital in carrying out scientific processes.
By definition per se, mass and volume bear distinction from another. Mass is more often associated with weight and can be defined as the amount of matter contained in every object. Volume, on the other hand, is frequently described as the space being occupied by a certain object.
Another difference that can delineate mass from volume is the properties that they each possess. Mass typically has an unchanging property and remains to be constant, regardless of the state the object is in. Volume, on the contrary, is highly affected by the state of which an object is in. In this light, volume is one aspect that is highly dependent on several factors such as the object’s state, size, shape and the container it is held within.
In addition to what has been cited, mass differs from volume in the sense that the former is measured in terms of grams or kilograms whereas the latter is measured by liters.
Until this modern age and time, mass and volume remain to be one of the basic concepts associated in the world of science. These two have always been equally important in improving various sciences.
Mass vs. Volume
The concepts of mass and volume are often confused because they are so related. They have a seemingly opposite relationship, because whenever something has more mass, it most likely occupies less space, and therefore, will have a lesser volume. This is the case of solid matter. On the other hand, gas matter has less mass but occupies a bigger space (it has a relatively bigger volume). Liquids are located somewhat in between the two properties. Due to this relationship, the term density is relevant, which is actually determined by dividing the mass by the volume of matter, or the ratio between the two values M/V, or M:V.
In terms of the nature of mass, all things or matter in this universe, both living and non-living, have mass. If you carefully observe the periodic table, you will see that each element (regardless of its state) has a corresponding mass. This mass is the sum of the number of the protons and neutrons in the atomic nucleus. The electrons do not contribute that much to mass. Hence, this brings us to one of the concrete characteristics of mass – a constant value.
For example, if your body mass here on earth is valued at 150 lbs, this means that you will have the same 150 lbs of mass wherever you are located in the universe. It is a value that is unaffected by other variables, such as gravity. It is very similar to weight, although weight is quite different because it is readily affected by gravity. Generally speaking though, mass and weight here on the surface of the earth are somewhat perceived to be the same.
You can determine your mass by using a weighing scale, or a pan balance, much like how your weight is obtained. Conversely, volumes can be assessed by multiplying the length, width and height of a rectangular 3-D object, or by measuring the calibrations of graduated cylinders and measuring cups whenever you are measuring the volume of liquids.
In terms of unit measures, volume is basically the cubic units of what is being measured ‘“ may it be in meters, inches, feet or centimeters, among others. That’s why its value is expressed in cubic meters, cubic inches and so on. Mass can be expressed in SI units of kilograms, grams or lbs for the English System of measurement.
1. Volume is simply the amount of cubic units required to fill (how much space it occupies) a solid object or container (e.g. rectangular prism, graduated cylinders, etc.), while mass is just the ‘amount of matter in the matter or object’ (solids, liquids, gases).
2. Mass is expressed in kilograms (kg), pounds (lbs), grams (g) and many other unit measures, while volume is expressed in cubic units, like cubic feet (ft3), cubic centimeters (cm3) and milliliters (mL), or liters (L) for liquids.
3. Unlike weight, mass is a constant value.
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