How to Read Dimensions

By Samuel Markings; Updated June 05, 2017
Dimensions define the space in the room.

Dimensions in blueprints represent the size of an object in two- or three-dimensional space. For example, a dimension of a rectangular room on a blueprint, 14' 11" X 13' 10" equates to a room size of 14 feet, 11-inches wide by 13 feet, 10-inches long. Dimensions are expressed as width by length by height or depth in three-dimensional space.

Object Measurements

A three-dimensional desk for example, may be expressed as 25" X 82" X 39" which means the desk is 25 inches wide by 82 inches long and 39 inches tall. A window dimension on blueprints is treated as two-dimensional space. For example, a window that is 24 inches wide by 30 inches tall would be written as 24" X 30". In the manufacturing industry, this standard window size is referred to as a 2030 or 2 feet by 3 feet. In a rectangular swimming pool, the dimension might read 16' X 30' X 9' or 16 feet wide by 30 feet long and 9 feet deep.

Determining Dimensions

In both physics and mathematics, a dimension represents the least number of coordinates required to identify any point with in it. A line represents one dimension, whereas a square represents two dimensions and a cube applies to three-dimensional space. If an object is circular and flat, the dimensions are normally quoted in terms of a single measurable factor called the radius. The radius of a circle is the distance between its center and outer edge.

About the Author

Samuel Markings has been writing for scientific publications for more than 10 years, and has published articles in journals such as "Nature." He is an expert in solid-state physics, and during the day is a researcher at a Russell Group U.K. university.