The newton (symbol: N) is the unit of force in the International System of Units (SI). It is defined as , the force which gives a mass of 1 kilogram an acceleration of 1 metre per second squared.
newton | |
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General information | |
Unit system | SI |
Unit of | force |
Symbol | N |
Named after | Sir Isaac Newton |
Conversions | |
1 N in ... | ... is equal to ... |
SI base units | 1 kg⋅m⋅s^{−2} |
CGS units | 10^{5} dyn |
Imperial units | 0.224809 lbf |
It is named after Isaac Newton in recognition of his work on classical mechanics, specifically his second law of motion.
A newton is defined as (it is a named derived unit defined in terms of the SI base units).^{[1]}^{: 137 } One newton is, therefore, the force needed to accelerate one kilogram of mass at the rate of one metre per second squared in the direction of the applied force.^{[2]}
The units "metre per second squared" can be understood as measuring a rate of change in velocity per unit of time, i.e. an increase in velocity by 1 metre per second every second.^{[2]}
In 1946, the General Conference on Weights and Measures (CGPM) Resolution 2 standardized the unit of force in the MKS system of units to be the amount needed to accelerate 1 kilogram of mass at the rate of 1 metre per second squared. In 1948, the 9th CGPM Resolution 7 adopted the name newton for this force.^{[3]} The MKS system then became the blueprint for today's SI system of units.^{[4]} The newton thus became the standard unit of force in the Système international d'unités (SI), or International System of Units.^{[3]}
The newton is named after Isaac Newton. As with every SI unit named for a person, its symbol starts with an upper case letter (N), but when written in full, it follows the rules for capitalisation of a common noun; i.e., newton becomes capitalised at the beginning of a sentence and in titles but is otherwise in lower case.
The connection to Newton comes from Newton's second law of motion, which states that the force exerted on an object is directly proportional to the acceleration hence acquired by that object, thus:^{[5]}
At average gravity on Earth (conventionally, ), a kilogram mass exerts a force of about 9.8 newtons.
Large forces may be expressed in kilonewtons (kN), where 1 kN = 1000 N. For example, the tractive effort of a Class Y steam train locomotive and the thrust of an F100 jet engine are both around 130 kN.^{[citation needed]}
Climbing ropes are tested by assuming a human can withstand a fall that creates 12 kN of force. The ropes must not break when tested against 5 such falls.^{[7]}^{: 11 }
newton | dyne | kilogram-force, kilopond |
pound-force | poundal | |
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1 N | ≡ 1 kg⋅m/s^{2} | = 10^{5} dyn | ≈ 0.10197 kp | ≈ 0.22481 lbf | ≈ 7.2330 pdl |
1 dyn | = 10^{–5} N | ≡ 1 g⋅cm/s^{2} | ≈ 1.0197×10^{−6} kp | ≈ 2.2481×10^{−6} lbf | ≈ 7.2330×10^{−5} pdl |
1 kp | = 9.80665 N | = 980665 dyn | ≡ g_{n} × 1 kg | ≈ 2.2046 lbf | ≈ 70.932 pdl |
1 lbf | ≈ 4.448222 N | ≈ 444822 dyn | ≈ 0.45359 kp | ≡ g_{n} × 1 lb | ≈ 32.174 pdl |
1 pdl | ≈ 0.138255 N | ≈ 13825 dyn | ≈ 0.014098 kp | ≈ 0.031081 lbf | ≡ 1 lb⋅ft/s^{2} |
The value of g_{n} as used in the official definition of the kilogram-force (9.80665 m/s^{2}) is used here for all gravitational units. |
Base | Force | Weight | Mass | |||||
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|
2nd law of motion | m = F/a | F = W ⋅ a/g | F = m ⋅ a | |||||
System | BG | GM | EE | M | AE | CGS | MTS | SI |
Acceleration (a) | ft/s^{2} | m/s^{2} | ft/s^{2} | m/s^{2} | ft/s^{2} | Gal | m/s^{2} | m/s^{2} |
Mass (m) | slug | hyl | pound-mass | kilogram | pound | gram | tonne | kilogram |
Force (F), weight (W) |
pound | kilopond | pound-force | kilopond | poundal | dyne | sthène | newton |
Pressure (p) | pound per square inch | technical atmosphere | pound-force per square inch | standard atmosphere | poundal per square foot | barye | pieze | pascal |
Prefix name | N/A | deca | hecto | kilo | mega | giga | tera | peta | exa | zetta | yotta | ronna | quetta |
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|
Prefix symbol | da | h | k | M | G | T | P | E | Z | Y | R | Q | |
Factor | 10^{0} | 10^{1} | 10^{2} | 10^{3} | 10^{6} | 10^{9} | 10^{12} | 10^{15} | 10^{18} | 10^{21} | 10^{24} | 10^{27} | 10^{30} |
Prefix name | N/A | deci | centi | milli | micro | nano | pico | femto | atto | zepto | yocto | ronto | quecto |
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|
Prefix symbol | d | c | m | μ | n | p | f | a | z | y | r | q | |
Factor | 10^{0} | 10^{−1} | 10^{−2} | 10^{−3} | 10^{−6} | 10^{−9} | 10^{−12} | 10^{−15} | 10^{−18} | 10^{−21} | 10^{−24} | 10^{−27} | 10^{−30} |