Scales also known as weighing scales or balance is a device used to measure weight or mass. These are also known as mass scales, weight scales, mass balances, and weight balances. The traditional scale consists of two plates or bowls suspended at equal distances from a fulcrum.
Weighing balances and scales are measuring instruments that are used for determining the weight or mass of an object. Due to the fact that there are so many different types of weighing balances and scales, this article will help identify some of the main weighing balances and their uses.
The weight of an object is commonly measured using metric units in gram (g) and kilogram (kg). However imperial measurements including pounds (lbs) and ounces(oz) are frequently used in the UK.
The modern weighing balance as we know it today at Precisa is an extremely high-tech device, providing precise measurements of up to the nearest 0.0001g, with built-in touch screens and internet connectivity resulting in the most efficient, accurate and reliable measurements.
Although the terms weighing ‘balance’ and ‘scale’ are used interchangeably, they technically measure different things.
Weighing balances measure mass, which is the amount of matter in something. A weighing balance measures mass directly by comparing the unknown mass to a known mass, which is not affected by changes in gravity. Therefore, a balance should give the same reading regardless of its location.
Scales on the other hand measure weight, which refers to the force acting on a mass that is equivalent to the object’s mass multiplied by acceleration due to gravity. The weight of any given object is dependent on local gravitational acceleration, which can vary by as much as 0.5%, changing with distance from the earth’s core, as well as latitudinally.
There can be confusion as some manufacturers refer to the same product as both a scale and a balance, but generally we hear about scales being used for larger masses and balances for smaller masses, although there can be some crossover.