Types of Mass in Physics

What does “Mass” mean?

” Mass ”  is that magnitude that allows to indicate the amount of matter that a body has. It must be taken into account that matter is everything that has inertia, that is, it needs force to start or stop its movement . Mass is then everything that occupies a place in space.

This magnitude is one of the most important notions in physics, and although its universal measure, established by the International System of Units is the Kilogram.

It should never be confused with weight, since weight can vary depending on where a body is gravitationally located, in relation to the Earth. From here two important concepts (physical laws) emerge, constitutive of mass, and according to which we can classify them:

Types of Mass

The two basic kinds of Masses are the Gravitational Mass and the Inertial Mass.

1. Gravitational Mass

Gravitational mass is defined through Newton’s Law of Gravitation , which is defined as the magnitude of the gravitational force that each body exerts on another.

The Gravity is the force thanks to which bodies experience the sensation of weight , where a body attracts tackles another. And it is precisely this that keeps us on Earth thanks to the action of the gravitational force .

That is why nothing on earth “floats” like on the moon, where there is no gravity, that is, you are not within a gravitational field that exerts this pressure so that bodies stay on the ground.

Outside the gravitational field, it could be said that weight will not exist , since there is no reference field that attracts one body over another, there would be no parameter to measure it.

2. Inertial Mass

This type of mass is often confused with the previous one, and in many cases the difference between one and the other is not even recognized, but both make up or are part of the same definition that encompasses the total mass.

In this case, inertial mass speaks of the inertia that bodies possess, and whose concept is key in the definition of mass, since it is precisely a constitutive part of it.

Newton also contributed to its discovery and definition, through his Second and Third Law within the so-called Dynamic laws . As inertia can be defined resistance bodies having to change its state of rest or motion without the intervention of any force .

In this change of state, the weight of the body intervenes, which is measured through the notion of gravitational mass. Therefore, inertial mass is the measure of the resistance that a body naturally opposes to the change in speed it experiences .

Examples: Type of mass 

Models are: paper and magazine articles, distributed photos, accounts of TV and radio stations, printed music and music recorded for mass dissemination, promotions, books, and magazines.

FAQ: Type Of Mass

What is a mass in science?

mass, in physics, quantitative measure of inertia, a fundamental property of all matter. It is, in effect, the resistance that a body of matter offers to a change in its speed or position upon the application of a force. The greater the mass of a body, the smaller the change produced by an applied force.

What are 2 examples of mass?

Mass can be best understood as the amount of matter present in any object or body. Everything we see around us has mass. For example, a table, a chair, your bed, a football, a glass, and even air has mass.

What is the unit of mass?

kilogram (kg)
The SI unit of mass is the kilogram (kg). In science and technology, the weight of a body in a particular reference frame is defined as the force that gives the body an acceleration equal to the local acceleration of free fall in that reference frame.

Is mass a weight?

In common usage, the mass of an object is often referred to as its weight, though these are in fact different concepts and quantities. In scientific contexts, mass is the amount of “matter” in an object (though “matter” may be difficult to define), whereas weight is the force exerted on an object by gravity.

Is mass a force?

Abstract. Force, mass and acceleration are everyday words but often used inaccurately. Force is a physical influence, which when applied to an object causes it to accelerate in the direction from which it was applied. Mass is the amount of matter in an object and is expressed in kilograms.

Reference: Types of Mass Media


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