Derived Quantity: Definition, Units, and Examples, and Measurement Tools

Definition and Examples of Derivative Quantities – Science in this world is very useful for human life. In addition, science can also help humans in completing a job. Therefore, many people say that science can make a life more meaningful.

One of the sciences that plays a significant role in the world is measurement, quantities, and units. This is because the life we ​​live will never be separated from everyday life, especially for workers who are related to counting. Therefore, we must always try to remember all kinds of quantities and units.

Many people already know about basic quantities, but not everyone knows about derived quantities. Even though the derived quantity can be said to have a considerable influence on counting activities. Derived quantities are quantities that are derived from the principal quantities. Even though, derived quantities are derived from basic quantities, you need to know them so that your knowledge and insight about calculations increases.

So, so that you know more about derived quantities, then you can read this article. This article about derived quantities will be discussed starting from the definition of derived quantities to examples of derived quantities. So, read this article to the end, Sinaumed’s.

Definition of Derivative Quantity

Derived quantity is a quantity that is derived from the base quantity. Basically, this derived quantity is almost the same as the basic quantity in which both of these quantities function to calculate something expressed in International Units (SI). The quantities that are calculated on derived quantities, such as area, volume, force, pressure, velocity, and others.

The units of derived quantities are often known as derived units. In addition, derived units are obtained from the combination of several base units. Therefore, we will rarely find units that consist of only one unit. Combining several fundamental quantities means that one fundamental quantity can produce several derived quantities. For example, the base unit length can give rise to the derived units of area and volume.

Each derived quantity often appears in math or physics problems when I was in high school. In fact, area, volume, and speed have existed since we were still in Elementary School (SD). Therefore, some people may not be familiar with derived quantities.

As is the definition of derived quantities, each unit of derived quantities is an adjustment of units to the base quantities. Of the many derived quantities, one of the simplest examples of derived quantities is area. For example, the derived quantity (area) of a rectangle has the formula (Length x Width), the multiplication produces the unit length (m) which is raised to the power, so that it becomes (m2).

The derived area is a quantity that is derived from the base unit length. The principal length unit has units (m). We can find the derived area in flat shapes, such as squares, rectangles, and other flat shapes. So, when we encounter a problem about calculating the area of ​​a flat shape, the unit must use the base unit raised to the power (m2).

When calculating the derived quantity it is easier to use the formula of the derived quantity itself. In other words, the formula is a measuring tool for the derived quantity itself. It’s not easy to memorize derived quantities, but as long as you really focus and really memorize them, then you remember the formula for derived quantities. Therefore, you need to memorize every formula for derived quantities. So, have you memorized the formula for each derived quantity?

The method of calculating derived quantities using this formula is often known as indirect measurement. Meanwhile, calculating the derived quantity using a measuring device is better known as direct measurement. In calculating derived quantities, you can also use measuring devices or direct measurements. The tools used to measure derived quantities can be said to be quite special.

Whether it’s direct or indirect measurement, both of them can be used in calculating derived quantities. In other words, when calculating derived quantities, it all depends on whether you are more comfortable using direct measurements or indirect measurements.

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Examples of Derived Quantities and Their Units

So, if you only discuss the meaning of derived quantities, it will be incomplete if you don’t discuss examples of derived quantities. To make it easier for you to understand each derived quantity, you can refer to the table of derived quantities accompanied by their units and formulas.

Derivative Amount International Unit (SI) Dimensions Symbols and Formulas
Style Newtons (kg m/s 2 ) N : MLT -2 F = m . a
Business Joules (kg m 2 s -2 ) J : M L2 T −2 W = F . s
Speed Distance/Time (m/s) V : LT -1 V = s / t
Acceleration LT –2 (m/s 2 ) a : LT -2 a = Δv / Δt
momentum kgm/s [M][L][T] P = m . v
Power Watts (kg.m^2.s^-3) W : [M] [L] [T] ⁻² P=W/t
Density Rho (kg/m 3 ) ρ ρ=m/V
Frequency Hertz (s –1 ) Hz f = 1/t
Load coulombs C I = Q/t
Electrical voltage Volt V V = I . R
Electrical resistance Ohms (Ω) R R=V/I
Wide m2 [L] 2 W = W x W
Volume m3 [L] 3 V = W x W x H
Pressure Pascal (Pa) (N / m 2 ) [M][T] -2 [L] -1 P=F/A


Force is a derived quantity where the units are derived from multiplying mass by acceleration. When described, the unit is (kg m / s 2 ) or better known as the Newton unit. So, when calculating the magnitude of the derivative of the force, you need to provide the units of Newtons (N). The derived quantity of force is usually found in physics lessons. The formula for force is F = m . a


Work is a derived quantity that has a derived unit named Joule. The Joule unit is obtained from the force multiplied by the distance which if written becomes (kg m2 s -2 ). As with force, we often find this effort in physics lessons. Work has a formula, namely W = F . s.


Speed ​​is a derived quantity obtained by calculating the distance traveled divided by the travel time and the unit that appears is m/s. Derived units are read as meters per second or meters per second . The derived quantity of velocity has a formula, namely V = s / t. We often find the derived quantity of velocity in mathematics lessons.


Acceleration is one of the derived quantities resulting from calculating the derived quantities of speed and travel time. The amount of speed derivative will be divided by the travel time that has been done. If, the derived unit of velocity is symbolized by the letter V, then the acceleration is symbolized by the letter a. The formula for the derived quantity of acceleration is a= Δv / Δt.


The next example of a derived quantity is momentum. Momentum is derived from multiplying mass and velocity, resulting in formulas such as meters per second or kilogram meters per second (kg m/s). Meanwhile, the formula for the magnitude of the momentum derivative is P = m v.


Power is a derived quantity having units of watts. This watt unit is obtained from the derived unit of effort and the basic unit of time. The formula for this power derivative is P = W/t or it can be said to be the value of work divided by time. We generally find this power in physics subjects.


Density is a derived quantity that is derived from the principal unit mass and derived from the principal unit length (m3), thus creating units such as (kg / m3 ) or kilograms per cubic meter. The name of the derived density unit is Rho. While the formula for density is ρ= /V.


Frequency is a derived quantity that states there will be vibrations or repeated loops per event in seconds or can be written like (s –1 ). The derived unit of frequency is often referred to as Hertz. The formula for frequency is 1/{period(t)} or f = 1/t . In general, the magnitude of the frequency derivative is often used to calculate sound vibrations.

Electrical charge

Electric charge is included in the derived quantity. Electric charge is a derived quantity that has units of Coulombs. The amount of charge drop can be calculated by means of indirect measurements and the formula for the amount of charge is I = Q/t. You can find derived quantities in physics.

Electrical voltage

Voltage is one type of derived quantity that is usually used to calculate differences in electric voltage. We often use the derived unit of this voltage in the electrical field, namely the Volt (V). Meanwhile, the formula for electric voltage is V = I. R.

Electrical resistance

Electrical resistance is a derived quantity that is closely related to electricity. The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm unit. The derived electrical resistance has a formula, namely R = V / I.


Area is a derived quantity derived from the principal quantity length. While the area value is obtained by multiplying the length and width (pxl). The unit used in the derived area is the cubic meter (m 2 ). This area formula is usually used to calculate the area of ​​a flat shape or a two-dimensional shape.

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Volume is a derived quantity derived from the principal quantity length, resulting in a volume formula that is length multiplied by width multiplied by the height of an object. After calculating the volume, the derived volume unit is the cubic meter (m 3 ). The volume derived quantity is in mathematics lessons in the field of geometric shapes or three-dimensional shapes.


Pressure is a derived quantity that is derived from the derived force with the derived area or if it is written as N/m2. The formula for the derived quantity is P = F / A. The derived quantity, which is the derivative of the magnitude of the force, is often found in physics.

Characteristics of Derivative Magnitudes

In order for you to understand more deeply in the discussion of derived quantities, you need to know the characteristics of derived quantities. There are two characteristics of derived quantities, namely more than one unit and can be calculated directly and indirectly.

1. More Than One Unit

For each derived quantity, the units are generally more than one or the units may also be a combination of several principal quantities. For example, the derived quantity of speed where the units are derived from the principal quantity of length (meters) and the principal quantity of time (seconds or seconds ). Therefore, when you want to calculate the magnitude of the speed derivative, the formula is speed (v) = length or distance traveled (s): time (t).

In addition, there are also derived quantities that have more than two units, namely the derived quantities of force. In terms of derived force, the unit used is Newton (N) where the base unit is kg . m/s 2 .

2. Can be counted directly and indirectly

As previously discussed, definite derived quantities can be calculated. In fact, derived quantities can appear in everyday life or in a problem. Therefore, we can calculate the derived quantity by using a measuring device or simply using a formula.

The use of measuring devices in calculating derived quantities is called direct measurement and the use of measuring devices when calculating derived quantities is called indirect measurement. For example, when you want to measure the volume of a drinking bottle, the volume can be found by measuring each part on the surface of the glass one by one or you can also use the volume formula.

Derivative Measurement Tool

One of the characteristics of derived quantities is that they can be calculated by indirect measurements or calculated using measuring devices. This derived quantity has a special measuring tool to find out the value of the derived quantity without using a formula. Measuring instrument derived quantities, namely:

1. Dynamometer

A dynamometer is a special tool that can function to calculate the size of the force that exists on an object. When used, the dynamometer will apply the spring force method.

2. Calorimeter

The calorimeter is a type of derivative measuring instrument used to measure the amount of heat that occurs in a chemical change or reaction.

3. Ohm Meters

Ohm meter is a derivative measurement tool that functions to calculate the electrical resistance that exists in objects related to electricity.

4. Speedometer

Speedometer is a type of derivative measurement tool that is usually used when calculating speed. We often find speedometers in motorcycles, cars, and so on.


Hygrometer is a measuring instrument for measuring the amount of derivative to calculate the humidity of the air in a room. This derived measurement tool can be said to be quite easy to use, so meluas can apply it easily.

6. Barometer

The barometer is a derivative measurement tool that is generally used to calculate the amount of air pressure that exists. Therefore, the barometer is usually used when predicting the weather.


Derived quantities are quantities that are derived from the principal quantities, so there can be more than one unit in the derived quantities. Therefore, it can be said that the derived quantities are a combination of the basic quantities and the derived quantities themselves. In addition, derived quantities can be calculated or measured using direct measurements (with tools) and indirect measurements (without measuring devices or with formulas).

Source: From various sources

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