The Significant Difference Between Volume and Capacity

The Significant Difference Between Volume and Capacity: Within the field of science, volume and capacity are usually mistaken and used correspondingly but they are actually different. Volume simply refers to the amount of three-dimensional space that it occupies while capacity refers to the maximum limits measured in liters.

So whenever volume and capacity are used, it typically involves an object and a certain amount of substance it consists of which is the primary reason why the terms are presumed to be the same. But in this article, we will show you the significant difference between volume and capacity.

Hence, the volume of a substance is the total amount of space that it covers, that is when we measure the space region taken up by a solid object it is called as volume. On the contrary, Capacity implies the quantity of something that a container holds. In short, capacity is the container’s volume.


What is the Meaning of Volume?

In spite of everything of the state of matter involved like solid, liquid or gas, and if or not there is actually an object within the container, the volume only refers to the three-dimensional space an object employed by itself.

In other words, volume simply means the three-dimensional size of the object. It is also determined as the product of the cross-sectional area and height of an object. Volume is generally measured in terms of cubic centimeters or cubic meters.


At times, the volume of a specific container is also seen as its capacity, as well. In the following figure, the volume of the cylinder is equal to the product of cross-sectional area A and height h; i.e V=A×h.

However, fluid displacement is a different way to determine the volume of solids or gas. Fluid displacement also involves absorbing the object in a fluid. The volume of the object will then displace the fluid. Such displacement of the fluid can then be measured. In this case, it will be expressed in liters, milliliters, fluid ounces, or cups.

The volume of fluids, or the quantity of small loose objects such as grains of rice, can also be measured by pouring them into a measuring tool such as a measuring cup

What is the Meaning of Capacity?

Capacity simply refers to the potential amount of substance that a container is able to hold or absorb. It may also have similarities in ideas with volume, but it is still separable.

It also concentrates more on how much a solid, liquid or gas can fit in a container and frequently means the maximum amount that one can bear. Capacity is typically measured in terms of liters, milliliters, pound, gallons, and the like. 

One way we can show the concept is that capacity is the ability of a container to hold two cups of rice, while that same container may have a volume of 5 cubic centimeters which refers to the amount of space that the container itself actually occupies.

The Significant Difference Between Volume and Capacity

1. Volume is the amount of space which is taken up by an object, whereas capacity is the measure of an object’s ability to hold a substance, like a solid, a liquid or a gas. 

2. Capacity is also the maximum limit which is measured in liters.

3. The Volume is measured in cubic units, whereas capacity can be measured in almost every other unit.

4. Volume is also calculated by multiplying the length, width, and height of an object, whereas the measurement for capacity is pitched more towards cc or ml.

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