Mass and Volume Relationship
Name: Cherish S.
Can some one please explain to me the relationship
between Mass and Volume.Thank you and I really appreciate the help from
Mass is a measure of the quantity of matter present in an object. Volume
is a measure of how much space it occupies.
Mass can be measured on an instrument called a "balance" -- that is, the
object whose mass is sought is placed on one side of a see-saw like device
and smaller reference masses (objects) are placed on the other side until
the balance swings freely at equilibrium.
The volume of an object can sometimes be determined by measurement if its
various dimensions followed by a calculation of its volume based on a
suitable formula. For example, a box has a volume that is the product of
its length, width, and height, V = L x W x H.
It would be incorrect to assume that any small object is of low mass --
and just as incorrect to assume that any object of large volume is of
necessity an object of high mass.
Density, d, is a comparison of an object's mass, m, to its volume ,V,
Thus, d = m / V It is in this relationship that mass and volume work
together to give on a sense of "how big" something actually is.
As you can see by examining the little formula, objects of high density
will have a lot of mass occupying a relatively small volume. As mentioned
above, it is incorrect to assume that an object of large volume is
necessarily an object of large mass. Put another way, just because an
object takes up a lot of space doesn't mean it will have a great mass. And
vice versa: An object of small volume can have relatively great mass.
Consider a Ping-Pong ball and a golf ball. Both are of approximately the
same volume. However, the golf ball has the greater mass and therefore the
Consider the box mentioned above: When empty, the box has a small mass
compared to its mass when the box is filled with sand -- even though the
volume is unchanged.
In simplest terms: Mass is a measure of the quantity of matter present in
an object. Volume is a measure of how much space it occupies. As you can
see, these terms do not mean the same thing.
In common use the term "mass" is equivalent to "weight". That is not
strictly true, but it will serve for the distinction you are asking. So some
object has a mass of so many (grams, pounds, and so on). The term "volume"
refers to the amount of space an object occupies. Volume is expressed in
(cm^3, liters, quarts, gallons, etc. A dense object weighs a lot for a given
volume -- steel or lead for example. A gas on the other hand is not dense.
For hydrogen at 0C and 1 atm pressure it takes only 2 grams to occupy 22.4
liters which equals 0.79 ft^3. This volume is just a bit less than a cube
The way I think about this is to say that these two things are not related at
all. Mass and volume are two properties of objects and they are
each other, that is, an objects mass can be high while its volume is low or
the mass can be low and its volume high. These two things are a measure of
different properties of an object. The volume of an object is how much space
it occupies. The mass of an object is a measure of how much gravity it has
common language, how much it weighs in a particular gravity field).
The two values can be related through another measure called density, which
relates how much mass an object has if it has a specified volume.
Greg (Roberto Gregorius)
Volume is the amount of space occupied by a three-dimensional solid
body, Volume is measured in terms of cubic units such as cubic
centimeters and cubic meters in the metric system or cubic inches and
cubic feet in the English system. Volume may also be expressed in liters
and gallons used for measuring volumes of liquids.
Mass on the other hand, is the amount of matter that a body contains, and
a measure of the inertial property of that body, that is, of its
resistance to change of motion.
I hope that this helps.
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Update: June 2012