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1 km 1 km = 0 . 621 mile 1 km size 12{ { {1` ital "km"} over {1` ital "km"} } = { {0 "." "621"` ital "mile"} over {1` ital "km"} } } {}

Clearly the left hand side of this equation is equal to 1. That is

1 = 0 . 621 mile 1 km size 12{1= { {0 "." "621"` ital "mile"} over {1` ital "km"} } } {}

This will serve as our conversion factor to solve our problem at hand. It is important to remember that this conversion factor is nothing more than a carefully selected form of the number 1.

Let us return to the quantity 25.2 kilometers that we wish to convert to miles. We can apply the conversion factor as follows

25 . 2 km × 0 . 621 mile 1 km = 25 . 2 km × 0 . 621 mile 1 km size 12{"25" "." 2` ital "km"` times { {0 "." "621"` ital "mile"} over {1` ital "km"} } = { {"25" "." 2` ital "km"` times 0 "." "621"` ital "mile"} over {1` ital "km"} } } {}

We observe that the unit ( km) appears in both the numerator and denominator and can be removed from the from the fraction. So our result is

25 . 2 km × 0 . 621 mile = 15 . 65 miles size 12{"25" "." 2` ital "km" times 0 "." "621"` ital "mile"="15" "." "65"` ital "miles"} {}

Thus we establish the result that 25.2 km is equivalent to 15.65 miles .

In obtaining the result, we developed a fraction that was equal to the integer 1. We then multiplied our original quantity by that fraction to give rise to our result. This is the basic idea behind unit conversion.

A two-step procedure for producing correct unit conversion factors

Here we will present a simple two-step procedure that produces the conversion factor that can be used to convert between a given unit and a desired unit. For the purpose of illustration, let us use the conversion between the given unit ( pounds ) and the ( desired ) unit of kg .

Step 1: We begin by writing an equation that relates the given unit and the required unit.

1 kg = 2 . 205 lb size 12{1` ital "kg"=2 "." "205"` ital "lb"} {}

Step 2: Convert the equation to fractional form with the desired units on top and the given units on the bottom.

1 kg 2 . 205 lb = 2 . 205 lb 2 . 205 lb size 12{ { {1` ital "kg"} over {2 "." "205"` ital "lb"} } = { {2 "." "205"` ital "lb"} over {2 "." "205"` ital "lb"} } } {}
0 . 454 kg lb = 1 size 12{ { {0 "." "454"` ital "kg"} over { ital "lb"} } =1} {}

So to covert from pounds to kg we may use this as the proper conversion factor.

Another notable engineering failure: the “gimli glider”

Like the NASA Mars Climate Orbiter, the “Gimli Glider” incident is an engineering failure that can be attributed directly to the errors involving the mismatch of units. The “Gimli Glider” is the nickname of the Air Canada commercial aircraft that was involved in an incident that took place on July 23, 1983. In the incident, a Boeing 767 passenger jet ran out of fuel at an altitude of 26,000 feet, about midway through its flight from Montreal to Edmundton via Ottawa. The aircraft safely landed at a former Canadian Air Force base in Gimli, Manitoba, thus contributing to the nickname associated with the aircraft. (New York Times, 1983) We will trace some of the steps that led to the incident while making use of data drawn from the website (Wikipedia).

Air Canada Flight 143 originated in Montreal. It safely arrived in Ottawa on its first leg. At that time, the pilot properly determined that the second leg of the flight (from Ottawa to Edmundton) would require 22,300 kilograms of jet fuel. The ground crew at the Ottawa airport, performed a dipstick check on the fuel tanks. They measured that there were 7,682 liters of fuel onboard the aircraft upon its arrival to Ottawa.

Based on these data, the air and ground crew proceeded to calculate the amount of jet fuel that would need to be transferred to the fuel tanks in order to assure safe arrival in Edmundton. However, they used an incorrect conversion factor in their calculations. At the time of the incident Canada was converting from the Imperial system of measurement to the metric system. The new Boeing 767 aircraft were the first of the Air Canada fleet to calibrated to the new system, using kilograms and liters rather than pounds and Imperial gallons .

Questions & Answers

what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
Can someone give me problems that involes radical expressions like area,volume or motion of pendulum with solution

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Source:  OpenStax, Math 1508 (laboratory) engineering applications of precalculus. OpenStax CNX. Aug 24, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11337/1.3
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