# Metric Volume

These are the two most common measurements:

**Milliliters****Liters**

A** milliliter** (that is "milli" and "liter" put together) is a very small amount of liquid.

Here is a milliliter of milk in a teaspoon.

It doesn't even fill the teaspoon!

If you collect about 20 drops of water, you will have 1 milliliter: |

20 drops of water makes about 1 milliliter |

And a teaspoon can hold about five milliliters: |

1 teaspoon of liquid is about 5 milliliters |

Milliliters are often written as ml (for short), so "100 ml" means "100 milliliters".

Here we have **150 ml** of milk in a measuring cup.

It doesn't say "150" ... it says "50" ... but it is half-way between 100 and 200 so you can figure out it is 150 ml.

## Liter

A **liter** is just a bunch of milliliters put all together. In fact, 1000 milliliters makes up 1 liter:

1 liter = 1,000 milliliters

This jug has exactly 1 liter of water in it.

Liters are often written as L (for short), so "3 L" means "3 Liters" (some people use lowercase **l**, but that looks too much like **1**).

Milk, soda and other drinks are often sold in liters.

A cube that is 0.1 meters (10 cm or 100 mm) |

and a square meter that is 1 millimeter thick also contains 1 liter. |

The next time you are at the store take a minute and **look on the labels** to see how many liters (or milliliters) are in each container!

## Other Volume Measurements

You may come across these other volume measurements:

### Cubic Meter (m^{3})

Volume is length by length by length, so the basic unit of volume is a **cube that is 1 meter on each side**.

The Unit is written m^{3} (cubic meters).

So, a cube that is 1 meter on each side is a cubic meter (m^{3}) ...

... and that is also **equal to 1,000 liters**.

1 m^{3} = 1,000 Liters

### Megaliters (ML)

A **Megaliter **is a million liters (1,000,000 L). Useful for measuring large quantities of water, such as in lakes and dams.

### Cubic Centimeter (cc)

A Cubic Centimeter (abbreviated cc or cm^{3}) is a **cube that is 1 centimeter on each side**.

It equals 1 mL (*one-thousandth* of a liter), and *one-millionth* of a cubic meter. Or to put it another way:

1 m^{3} = 1,000 L = 1,000,000 cm^{3}

(one cubic meter = a thousand liters = a million cubic centimeters)

### Cubic Millimeter

A Cubic Millimeter is a **cube that is 1 millimeter on each side**.

It is *one-millionth* of a liter, and *one-billionth* of a cubic meter.

It is very small, and you would need 1,000 Cubic Millimeters to make just one milliliter.

## More Examples

A liter (L) is:

- a bit more than a quart (US measure)
- about the quantity in a sports drink bottle
- close to the volume of a kilogram of water

A cubic centimeter is about:

- the size of a grape

A cube that is 1mm on each side is a cubic millimeter