Mass and weight – Basics by [Akshay kumar]

Hi friends,  are mass and weight same? this is a similar inquiry I excessively got when I was a little kid. presently I will clarify it in this article… I trust you’ll read it.

The word weight was used above to denote the force with which the book pressed on the table as a consequence of the gravitational force of attraction between the Earth and the book, and Newton’s third law. Here we give a more rigorous definition of the term weight. Specifically,
friends since we know and we have learned also forces are measured in Newtons, so is weight. An analogous definition for the weight of an object on the moon or any other planet can also be made.

We thus see that the weight of an object is different on different planets, as the force of attraction would be different (this force depends on the planet’s mass and radius). Even on earth, weight changes with changing altitude: the higher up you go, the less force the earth exerts on you, and hence your weight decreases. Ultimately one reaches a height where the earth exerts the negligible force on you, and you experience weightlessness. We will learn more about gravity, and how it varies from place to place and planet to planet,

From the above discussion, we see that mass and weight cannot strictly speaking be equivalent. Mass is the resistance of an object to a change in its motion, while weight is the gravitational force of attraction between the object and the Earth. Mass and weight even have different units.

Nonetheless, the terms weight and mass are sometimes used interchangeably. For example, when we weigh an object the result is sometimes given in kilograms, and sometimes in pounds. We learn while shopping that 454 grams of cherries are the same as 1 lb of cherries. However, in the British system of units the “pound” is a unit of force that is used as the standard unit of weight (the related unit of mass is called the “slug”, which is probably why the pound was adopted as the standard). The conversion to MKS units is given by
Newton’s second law plus a remarkable fact first discovered by Galileo can be used to provide us with a relationship between mass and weight that is implicitly used whenever something is said to “weigh” 1 kg, for example.

Since force equals mass times acceleration, and weight is the force of gravity on an object we have that The remarkable fact realized by Galilean is that all objects accelerate towards the Earth at the same rate. You can verify this yourself by doing the following simple experiment. Hold a sheet of paper in one hand and your physics textbook in the other, and drop them simultaneously from the same height above your desk. Do they hit the desk at the same time? The answer is no, but we know that the reason has to do with air resistance, which has more effect on the light piece of paper than on the heavy textbook. Now if the piece of paper is just a bit smaller than the size of your textbook you can place the paper on top of the book, and drop the two together.

You should find, quite dramatically, that the book and paper hit the desk at precisely the same instant. What is happening, in this case, is that the book is shielding the paper from the effects of air resistance, so that this experiment verifies the fact that: At sea level, this rate is 9.8 m/s2.
Going back to Newton’s 2nd law, the force on an object due to gravity, at sea level, must therefore be
The upshot of all this is that the weight of an object is proportional to its inertial mass and is completely independent of the object’s composition. Consequently, one kilogram of anything weighs 9.8 Newtons, and we can “convert” back and forth between kilograms and Newtons using the conversion factor of 9.8 Newtons per kilogram. This, however, should not be viewed as a simple conversion of units like between, for example, meters and kilometers; the weight and mass measure different things, whereas meters and kilometers are both units of distance. As a check, we recall that 1 pound is equivalent to 4.45 Newtons. “Converting” 4.45 Newtons to kilograms by dividing by 9.8 Newtons per kilogram we find that 1 pound is “equivalent” to
4.45 N/ (9.8 N/kg) = .454 kg .i hope you got it…thanks for reading…please check it out my recent posts.

– Akshay Kumar Das

Copyright © 2013 by Akshay Kumar [Samal das akshay] All rights reserved. This Post or any portion thereafter may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher.

Mail me: akshaykumar@melodiesphysics.com

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