Login

How to Convert Meters per Second to Miles per Hour

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: How to Convert Miles per Hour to Meters per Second

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
 Replay
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:03 Converting Meters Per…
  • 1:27 Solution
  • 1:51 Finding a Conversion…
  • 5:59 Lesson Summary
Add to Add to Add to

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Login or Sign up

Timeline
Autoplay
Autoplay
Create an account to start this course today
Try it free for 5 days!
Create An Account

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Gerald Lemay

Gerald has taught engineering, math and science and has a doctorate in electrical engineering.

Both meters per second and miles per hour are valid units for speed and velocity. In this lesson, you will learn a quick way to convert from one unit to the other. We'll also see how we can make this conversion more accurate.

Converting Meters per Second to Miles per Hour

To convert a speed in meters per second to a number of miles per hour, we use:

  • 1 meter per second = 2.2369 miles per hour, accurate to 5 significant figures

Let's do an example to outline the steps used in the conversion:

The average walking speed of an adult is 1.34 meters per second. What is this speed in miles per hour?

Step 1:

Multiply the given value with the conversion factor. We know the conversion factor is 2.2369. Therefore:

  • 1.34(2.2369) = 2.997446

Step 2:

Determine the number of significant figures:

  • The number 1.34 has 3 significant figures
  • The number 2.2369 has 5 significant figures

Step 3:

Round the answer to the lesser number of significant figures. Since the lesser number of significant figures is 3, we round the answer to 3 significant figures:

  • 2.997446 rounds to 3.00 when we keep 3 significant figures

Thus, 1.34 meters per second converts to 3.00 miles per hour.

Solution

Another way to say how to convert x meters per second to miles per hour is to multiply x by 2.2369 and then round to the number of significant figures in x. This solution will work for most of the cases you encounter. Of course, if x has more than 5 significant figures, we will need a more accurate conversion factor.

Finding a Conversion Factor with More Significant Figures

The conversion factor, 2.2369, has 5 significant figures and works very well when the speed to be converted is a number of meters per second with 5 or less significant figures. We will now show where the number, 2.2369, comes from and how to extend it to have more significant figures.

Speed is a measure of distance and time. We can develop our ability to do unit conversions, by looking at time and distance separately.

First, time. There are 3600 seconds in 1 hour:


converting_using_60miles=100km


Second, distance. The following conversion factors are completely accurate:

  • 5280.00 feet = 1.00 mile
  • 12.00… inches = 1.00 foot
  • 2.5400… cm = 1.00 inch
  • 100.00… cm = 1.00 m
  • 1000.00… m = 1.00 km

Combining these conversion factors so the units cancel:


converting_using_infinite_number_SF


Everything except miles over hours cancels out:


converting_using_infinite_number_SF


The result is 2.236936292054402… and is only limited in accuracy by the word size of the computer or calculator. The idea is to round this conversion factor to a number of significant digits which is at least one more than the accuracy of the number to convert.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register for a free trial

Are you a student or a teacher?
I am a teacher

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 95 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 2,000 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it free for 5 days!
Create An Account
Support