The mass of a body is the amount of matter contained within it, while the weight of a body is the force acting on it due to acceleration due to gravity. This is the primary difference between mass and weight in chemistry.
In daily life, the terms mass and weight are often used interchangeably. For students of science, however, it’s crucial to understand the difference. We associate mass and weight with the measurement of how heavy an object is. While this can be a fundamental explanation, there are many details involved. This guide talks about mass and weight and the key differences between them.
Every object in this universe is made of matter, which in turn is made of subatomic particles like electrons, protons, and neutrons. One of the basic properties of matter is that it has a mass. Mass is one of the fundamental quantities in physics, and it is defined as the amount of matter in a particular body.
The international standard unit of mass, or the SI unit, is the Kilogram (Kg). It is crucial to remember that the mass of a body remains constant at all times. However, in certain rare cases like a nuclear reaction, some amount of mass is converted into energy. Therefore, the mass of the substance reduces.
Weight is also one of the fundamental quantities in physics. The definition of weight in chemistry is the amount of gravitational force acting on it. Since weight is a measure of force, the SI unit of weight is Newton.
To find out the weight of a body, we multiple its mass with acceleration due to gravity. Hence, the formula comes out to be, w = mg. Now, in this instant equation, the mass of the body remains constant, but the acceleration due to gravity is variable because it can change from place to place.
When you stand at the North Pole, you experience more weight than a person standing at the equator. The mass of both people here remains the same but acceleration due to gravity changes.
There are two reasons for this:
Let's make a list of properties of both these quantities to understand the basic differences between them.
1. What is the difference between mass and weight?
The mass of a body is the amount of matter in it, whereas the weight of a body is the measurement of gravitational force acting on it.
2. What are the three differences between mass and weight?
We can write the following points when we state the difference between mass and weight:
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