Ton vs Tonne

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What’s the difference between them?

Ton

Meaning:

Ton is a unit of measure equal to 2,000 pounds (907.18 kilograms) in North America and also known as a 'short ton.' There is also an 'imperial' ton (also known as British ton), which is 1.016.047 kg or 2.240 lb.

Examples:

1. The ton of bricks that was shipped to the building site was a lot heavier than expected.

2. Our car was able to tow a ton of weight with ease.

3. His voice had a soothing ton that made everyone calm.

Tonne

Meaning:

A tonne, also referred to as a metric ton, is a unit of mass in the metric system, equal to 1,000 kilograms or 2,204.6 pounds.

Examples:

1. The truck was carrying five tonnes of coal.

2. The recycling centre had to transport twenty tonnes of plastic to the factory.

3. We managed to move the tonne of gravel with a forklift.

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Synonyms

Antonyms

Ton

There are no direct synonyms for this word.

There are no direct antonyms for this word.

Tonne

Metric ton

There are no direct antonyms for this word.

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Ton", "Tonne".

1. Ton is a unit of weight/mass used in the US and is equal to 2000 pounds (907 kg).

2. Tonne is a metric unit of mass and is equal to 1000 kg.

3. Use the phrase 'metric tonne or US ton' to easily remember the difference between the two.

Check the full list of commonly confused words in English

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Frequently asked questions

When to use the first word 'Ton'?

The word ton is a unit of measure for weight. It is often used to talk about the weight of large items, such as vehicles and cargo. It is equal to 2,000 pounds (907.185 kilograms). For example, a large truck might be said to weigh 10 tons. In the United States, the ton is sometimes called a short ton, while in the United Kingdom, it is called a long ton.

When to use the second word 'Tonne'?

The word tonne is also a unit of measure for weight. It is the metric equivalent of the ton, and is equal to 1,000 kilograms. It is mostly used in scientific contexts and for measuring the weight of large objects, such as vehicles and ships. For example, a large truck might be said to weigh 10 tonnes.

Do the words have the same pronunciation?

No, the words have different pronunciations. The word ton is pronounced with a short 'o' sound (as in 'don') while the word tonne is pronounced with a long 'o' sound (as in 'bone').

What are common mistakes associated with the words 'ton' and 'tonne'?

One common mistake is using the wrong unit of measure for a particular context. For example, it is common for people to use the word tonne when they should be using the word ton. Another common mistake is confusing the metric tonne with the British long ton, which is slightly different. Finally, people often forget about the different pronunciations for the two words.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. The elephant weighs nearly 6 ______.

2. In the UK, a ______ is equivalent to 1,000 kilograms.

3. The American ______ is commonly used in the United States and is equal to 2,000 pounds.

4. The shipment weighs approximately 10 ______.

5. In British English, colour is spelled with a u, similarly to how ______ is spelled with an e.

6. The vehicle can carry up to 2 ______ of cargo.

1. Answer: tons or tonnes

Explanation: There is no specific clue in the sentence to indicate whether American or British English should be used, so both ton and tonne are acceptable answers.

2. Answer: tonne

Explanation: The sentence provides a clue by mentioning in the UK and providing the metric equivalent, which indicates that the British English spelling, tonne, should be used.

3. Answer: ton

Explanation: The sentence provides a clue by mentioning the American ton and the United States, which indicates that the American English spelling, ton, should be used.

4. Answer: tons or tonnes

Explanation: There is no specific clue in the sentence to indicate whether American or British English should be used, so both ton and tonne are acceptable answers.

5. Answer: tonne

Explanation: The sentence provides a clue by discussing British English spelling and giving an example (colour), indicating that tonne, which is British English spelling, should be used.

6. Answer: tons or tonnes

Explanation: There is no specific clue in the sentence to indicate whether American or British English should be used, so both ton and tonne are acceptable answers.

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