Units of Volume

The fundamental unit for measuring volume is the cubic meter.

There are also other units for measuring large and small quantities of volume:

 cubic kilometer km³ 1,000,000,000 m³ hectometer cubic hm³ 1,000,000m³ decameter cubic dam³ 1,000 m³ cubic meter m³ 1 m³ cubic decimeter dm³ 0.001 m³ cubic centimeter cm³ 0.000001 m³ cubic millimeter mm³ 0.000000001 m³

Note that each unit is 1,000 times larger than the previous.

Therefore, the problem of converting units to other units becomes an issue of multiplying or dividing the unit by one followed by as many trios of zeros as there are places between them.

1.36 Hm³

In this case, multiply (because the Hm³ is greater than the m³) the unit by one followed by six zeros, since there are two places between both units.

1.36 · 1,000,000 = 1,360,000 m³

15,000 mm³ cm³

In this case, divide (because the mm³ is smaller than the c) by one followed by three zeros, since there is one place between both units.

15,000 : 1,000 = 15 cm³

Relationship between Units of Capacity, Volume and Mass

There is a direct relationship between volume and capacity. 1 litre is the capacity that contains a cubic receptacle of 1 dm of space; that is to say, the capacity contained in a volume of 1 dm³.

There is also a relationship between volume and the mass of water. 1 g equals 1 cm³ of pure water at 4° C.

Capacity Volume Mass (of water)
1 kl 1 m³ 1 t
1 l 1 dm³ 1 kg
1 ml 1 cm³ 1 g

Examples

Convert to liters:

23.2 m³ =

= 23,200 dm³ = 13,200 l

0.07 m³ =

= 70 dm³ = 70 l

5.2 dm³ =

= 5.2 l

8,800 cm³ =

= 8.8 dm³ = 8.8 l