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Three approaches to mass and force units[1][2]

v · d · e

Base

force, length, time weight, length, time mass, length, time
Force (F) F = m·a = w·a/g F = m·a/gc = w·a/g F = m·a = w·a/g
Weight (w) w = m·g w = m·g/gc ≈ m w = m·g
System BG GM EE M AE CGS MTS SI
Acceleration (a) ft/s2 m/s2 ft/s2 m/s2 ft/s2 gal m/s2 m/s2
Mass (m) slug hyl, also called “metric slug” or “TME” lbm kg lb g t kg
Force (F) lb kp lbF kp pdl dyn sn N
Pressure (p) lb/in2 at PSI atm pdl/ft2 Ba pz Pa

Documentation

This table previously included rows that provided common labels or descriptions for the three approaches, i.e.

  • technical (force column),
  • gravitational (force or weight column),
  • engineering (force or weight column),
  • colloquial (weight column),
  • pre-newtonian (weight column),
  • absolute (mass column, also force column),
  • scientific (mass column),
  • coherent (force and mass columns),
  • incoherent (weight column).

This was deemed inappropriate and should be discussed in surrounding prose where necessary.

Parameter system

Three approaches to metric mass and force units[1][2]

v · d · e

Base

force, length, time weight, length, time mass, length, time
Force (F) F = m·a = w·a/g F = m·a/gc = w·a/g F = m·a = w·a/g
Weight (w) w = m·g w = m·g/gc ≈ m w = m·g
System GM M CGS MTS SI
Acceleration (a) m/s2 m/s2 gal m/s2 m/s2
Mass (m) hyl, also called “metric slug” or “TME” kg g t kg
Force (F) kp kp dyn sn N
Pressure (p) at atm Ba pz Pa
Three approaches to English mass and force units[1][2]

v · d · e

Base

force, length, time weight, length, time mass, length, time
Force (F) F = m·a = w·a/g F = m·a/gc = w·a/g F = m·a = w·a/g
Weight (w) w = m·g w = m·g/gc ≈ m w = m·g
System British Gravitational (BG) English Engineering (EE) Absolute English (AE)
Acceleration (a) ft/s2 ft/s2 ft/s2
Mass (m) slug lbm lb
Force (F) lb lbF pdl
Pressure (p) lb/in2 PSI pdl/ft2
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Lindeburg, Michael, Civil Engineering Reference Manual for the PE Exam 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Wurbs, Ralph A, Fort Hood Review Sessions for Professional Engineering Exam, http://engineeringregistration.tamu.edu/tapedreviews/Fluids-PE/PDF/Fluids-PE.pdf, retrieved October 26, 2011 
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