How come you cannot use mass or volume alone to identify substances?

1 Answer
Mar 1, 2016

Mass and volume are extrinsic properties.


For Example

A pail may contain water that is #1 "kg"# in mass and #1 "L"# in volume.

A drop of water may be #1 "g"# in mass and #1 "mL"# in volume.

Both are water, but they have different mass and volumes. Therefore you can't identify whether a substance is water just by measuring its mass and volume.

However, the ratio of the mass to volume (density) can be used to identify substances.