Definition:Mass Density/Area

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The area mass density of a two-dimensional body is its mass per unit area.


The usual symbol used to denote area mass density is $\rho_A$ (Greek letter rho).

However, some sources simply use $\rho$ if the context makes it clear that it refers to area mass density rather than volume mass density.

Occasionally, $\sigma$ (Greek letter sigma) is also used, but this is more commonly used for surface charge density.


The dimension of area mass density is $\mathsf M \mathsf L^{-2}$: mass per unit area.



$1 \ \mathrm g \ \mathrm{cm}^{-2} = 10 \ \mathrm{kg} \ \mathrm m^{-2}$

Also known as

Area mass density is usually referred to just as area density when it is clear that mass density is the kind of density under discussion.

Area (mass) density is also known as surface density, areal density or planar density.

Also see

  • Results about area mass density can be found here.