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Measurement. The International System of Units ( SI ) is the standard system used around the world. Length. The standard SI unit to measure length is the meter (m). The meter is divided into 100 equal parts called centimeters (cm).

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The International System of Units (SI) is the standard system used around the world.



  • The standard SI unit to measure length is the meter (m).

  • The meter is divided into 100 equal parts called centimeters (cm).

  • The centimeter is divided into 10 equal parts called millimeters (mm).

  • Long distances are measured in kilometers (km) which is 1,000 m.



  • Mass is the amount of matter that something is made of.

  • The kilogram is the SI unit to measure mass.

  • Mass is measured with a triple balance beam.

  • Unlike weight, mass does not change with an object’s position.



  • Weight is a measurement of the gravitational force on an object.

  • The SI unit for force is the Newton (N).

  • Since weight is a measure of gravitational force, it does matter where you are.

  • There is 6 times less gravitational force on the moon, so you would weight 6 times less there.

  • Use spring scales to measure weight.



  • Density is mass per unit volume.

  • Density is the amount of matter it has in a given space.

  • To find density (D), first measure the mass (m) and volume (V), then divide mass by volume.

  • Density is an SI derived unit (mass and volume)



  • Volume is the amount of space that something occupies.

  • Volumes of liquids are expressed as liters (L).

  • Graduated cylinders are used to measure liquid volume, and also to find the volume of a small odd shaped object. (see meniscus)

  • Volumes of solid objects are expressed in cubic meters (cm3)



  • Area is the amount of surface included within a set of boundaries and is expressed in square such as square meters (m2).

  • The amount of space occupied by an object is the object’s volume.

Area and Volume

  • The basic SI unit of volume for a solid object is the cubic meter (m3).

  • SI measurements for liquid volumes are in milliliters (mL) or liters (L).



  • Temperature is a measure of the average kinetic energy of the particles in an object.

  • Temperature is not determined by how much of the substance you have.

  • The SI unit for temperature is Kelvin (K), however the Celsius (C) scale is most commonly used.

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