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# Measurements and Conversions

Multiply by 1
To convert units, theres only one other thing you need to bear in mind:

## You can multiply anything by 1 and not change its value.

Obvious, right? So why mention it? I hear you ask. Because multiplying by 1a
carefully chosen form of 1is the key to converting units.
Let me illustrate with an example. Ill deliberately pick an easy one, one you could
probably do in your head, so that I can show the steps excruciatingly clearly.
Example:
Sample Problem:
Suppose you want to convert four and a half hours to minutes.
Solution:
First, find its conversion factor.
60 minutes = 1 hour

Now divide both sides by 1 hour. (Remember you can do this because
you treat the unit hour just like a variable. If you had 60x = 1y, you
could certainly divide both sides by 1y.) After dividing, you have

60
=1
1
Why did I do that? Because if (60 min)/(1 hr) = 1, then I can multiply
any measurement by that fraction and not change its value. (Ill
explaina little later why I divided through by 1 hr and not 60 min.) So go
back to the 4 hours that we wanted to convert to minutes. To do the
conversion, simply multiply by that well-chosen form of 1:

4.5 hr
which is the same as

4.5

60
1

Now, x times y/z is the same as xy/z, so our units expression is the
same as

(4.5 )(60 )
1
Cancel out the same unit.

(4.5 )(60 )
1
Notice that you have hours (hr) in both top and bottom. Just as you
would divide through by x when x was in both top and bottom, so you
can divide through by the variable hr:

(4.5)(60 )
1
which multiplies out to

270
Summary: to convert units, construct a fraction that is equal to 1, multiply the original
measurement by that fraction, and simplify.

Conversion Factors
Length
1 kilometer (km)

1 meter (m)

## 1000 meters (m)

1 centimeter (cm)

10-2m

1 millimeter (mm)

10-3m

1 micron ()

10-6m

1 millimicron (m)
1 angstrom (A)
1 inch (in.)

1 mil

2,540 cm

1 mile (mi)

10-10m

1 foot (ft)

10-9m

30,48 cm
=

1,609 km

10-3 in.

1 centimeter

1 meter

39,37 in.

0,3937 in.

## 1 kilometer = 0,6214 mile

Area
1 square meter (m2)

## 1 square mile (mi2)

1 square foot (ft2)
1 acre

=
=

10,76 ft2
640 acres
929 cm2

43,560ft2

Volume
1 liter (l)

1000cm3

61,02 in3

0,03532 ft3

## 1 cubic meter (m3)

1 cubic foot (ft3)

1000 l

1 British gallon

35,32 ft3

7,481 U.S.gal
231 in3

0,02832 m3

28,32 l

3,785 l

1,201 U.S.gallon

277,4 in3

Mass
1 kilogram (kg)
1 lb

453,6 gm

1 slug

32,174 lb

0,06852 slug;

0,03108 slug
=

14,59 kg

Speed
1 km/h
1mi/h

0,2778 m/sec

1,467 ft/sec

=
=

0,6214 mi/h
1,609 km/h

0,9113 ft/sec

0,4470 m/sec

Density
1 gm/cm3
1 lb/ft3

103 kg/m3

1,940 slug/ft3

0,01602 gm/cm3

1 slug/ft3

62,43 lb/ft3

0,5154 gm/cm3

Force
1 newton (nt)

105 dynes

4,448 nt
=

1 U.S.short ton

1 long ton

2240 lbwt

1 metric ton

=
=

2,205 lbwt

2000 lbwt

2205 lbwt

0,1020 kgwt

0,4536 kgwt
=

9,807 nt

0,2248 lbwt
=

32,17 poundals

Energy
1 joule
=
1 nt
9,481 X 10-4 Btu
1 ft lbwt

107 ergs

1,356 joules

1 calorie (cal)

0,7376 ft lbwt

0,3239 cal

4,186 joules

=
=

778 ft lbwt

0,2389 cal

3,087 ft lbwt

1055 joules

860,0 kcal

0,2389 cal/sec

0,293 watt h

3413 Btu

## 1,602 X 10-19 joule

Power
1 watt

1 joule/sec

1 horsepower (hp)
1 kilowatt (kw)

107 ergs/sec

550 ft lbwt/sec

1,341 hp

## 33,000 ft lbwt /min

737,6 ft lbwt/sec

745,7 watts

0,9483 Btu/sec

Pressure
1 nt/m2
1 lbwt/in2

10 dynes/cm2

=
=

6895 nt/m2

1 atmosphere (atm)
14,70 lbwt/in2
=

=
=

5,171 cm mercury

## 2,089 X 10-2 lbwt/ft2

27,68 in water

=
1,013 X 1015 nt/m2
=
1,013 X 1015 dynes/cm2
76 cm mercury
=
406,8 in.water

Time
Temperature
To convert from Celsius to Fahrenheit, first multiply by 9/5, then add 32.
To convert from Fahrenheit to Celsius, first subtract 32, then multiply by 5/9

## Celsius to Kelvin conversion formula

The temperature T in Kelvin (K) is equal to the temperature T in degrees Celsius (C) plus 273.15:

Length

TYPE OF MEASURE
Square
Cubic &
Measures
Volume
Measures

Weights

Temperature

## COMMONLY USED ABBREVIATIONS

Abbreviations may stand for singular or plural usage
cm = centimeter
cu. = cubic
ft. = foot
gl. = gallon (US)
gr. = gram
Imp. = Imperial
in. = inch
kg. = kilogram
km. = kilometer
l. = liter
lb. = pound
m. = meter
mi. = mile
oz. = ounce
qt. = quart
std. = standard
US = United States
yd. = yard

LENGTH MEASURES
Common Usage
Type

Reciprocal Value

1 ft. = 12 in..

1 yd. = 3 ft.

## 1 yd. = 0.1818 rods

1 furlong = 40 rods

## 1 rod = 0.0250 furlongs

1 mile = 8 furlongs

Abbr

1 fathom = 6 ft.

1 league = 3 mi.

METRIC
1 in. = 2.54 cm.

## 1 cm. = 0.0328 ft.

1 m. = 3.2808 ft.

1 ft. = 0.3048 m.

1 m. = 39.37 in.

1 in. = 0.0254 m.

1 m. = 1.0936 yd.

1 yd. = 0.9144 m.

1 rod = 5.029 m.

1 m. = 0.1988 rod

1 km = 1000 m.

1 m. = 0.001 km.

1 km = 0.621 mi.

SQUARE MEASURES
Common Usage
Type

Reciprocal Value

## 1 acre = 0.0016 sq. mi.

Abbr

METRIC
1 sq. cm. = 0.1550 sq. in.

Common Usage
Type

Reciprocal Value

## 1 cu. in. = 0.00016 US std. gal.

METRIC
1 cu. in. = 16.39 cu. cm.

Abbr

DRY MEASURES
1 qt. = 2 pints

1 peck = 8 qt.

## 1 qt. = 0.1250 peck

1 bushel = 4 pecks

## 1 peck = 0.2500 bushels

METRIC
1 qt. dry = 1.101 l.

## 1 l. = 0.908 qt. dry

1 peck = 8.810 l.

1 l. = 0.1135 peck

LIQUID MEASURES
1 pint = 2 cup

1 qt. = 2 pints

1 gl. = 4 qt.

1 gl. = 8 pints

## IMPERIAL & METRIC LIQUID MEASURE

1 US gl. = 0.833 Imp. gl.

## 1 l. = 0.2200 Imp. gl.

1 l. = 0.264 US gl.

1 US gl. = 3.7879 l.

## 1 qt. liquid = 0.9463 l.

1 gl. = 3.7854 l.

1 l. = 0.2642 gl.

WEIGHT MEASURES
Common Usage
Type

Reciprocal Value

1 lb. = 16 oz.

## 1 lb. = 0.0005 ton

Abbr

METRIC
1 oz. = 28.35 gr.

1 kg = 1000 gm

Temperature
Type

Fahrenheit

= 5/9 x (F - 32)

(9/5 x C) + 32

Abbr