|Unit symbol||, ,|
|Physical quantity (s)||volume|
|system||Approved for use with the SI|
|In SI units|
|In CGS units|
Basically, in the International System of Units (SI), the unit symbols are written in lower case, unless the name of the unit is derived from a person's proper name. In this case, the first letter of the character is capitalized. Accordingly, the unit symbol for the liter is a lowercase l , since the unit name liter was not derived from a proper name.
The uppercase L was exceptionally approved by the CGPM as an alternative unit symbol for the liter in order to avoid confusion between the letter l and the number 1 , which can occur in some fonts, and is more commonly used in English and French-speaking countries. ISO and IEC only use the original symbol l . IUPAC and DIN 1301-1 allow both spellings.
Occasionally, a lowercase l in cursive (ℓ) is used to distinguish the unit symbol from the number 1 or the capital letter I. The associated Unicode code point for the “ℓ” is U + 2113.
The unit name liter used to be neuter according to DIN 1301-1. However, this no longer coincided with common usage. The Duden, for example, only mentions the neuter form in second place. With DIN 1301-1: 2010-10 this definition was changed compared to DIN 1301-1: 2002-10; the unit name liter is now defined as male.
Common decimal parts and multiples of the liter are:
|Femtoliter||fl||10 -15||0.001 pl||a billiardth of a liter, corresponds to a cubic micrometer (1 μm³)|
|Picoliters||pl||10 −12||0.001 nl||a trillionth of a liter|
|Nanoliters||nl||10 −9||0.001 µL||a billionth of a liter|
|Microliters||μl||10 −6||0.001 ml||one millionth of a liter, corresponds to one cubic millimeter (1 mm³)|
|Milliliters||ml||10 −3||0.1 cl||one thousandth of a liter, corresponds to one cubic centimeter (1 cm³)|
|Centiliters||cl||10 −2||0.1 dl||a hundredth of a liter, a typical shot glass has a volume of 2 cl|
|deciliter||dl||10 −1||0.1 l||a tenth of a liter|
|liter||l||10 0||1000 ml = 100 cl = 10 dl||corresponds to one cubic decimeter (1 dm³), the size of a typical milk carton|
|Hectoliters||St.||10 2||100 l||one hundred liters, a typical unit in the beverage industry|
In 1879, the CIPM adopted the French liter definition and prescribed the use of the l (lowercase letter l) as a symbol.
In 1901 the liter was redefined on the third CGPM to the volume that 1 kg of pure water has at the temperature of its highest density under normal pressure (1013.25 hPa ). The liter was about 1,000 028 dm³ (originally 1,000 027 dm³ specified for the conversion). Due to the new task for this unit of measurement, to couple mass and volume via a special measured variable of the water, pure water still had a density of 999.975 kg / m³ under these conditions, but now exactly 1,000 kg / l.
Later, the definition was set to the water temperature of 4 ° C, which is not the temperature of the highest water density (actually around 3.98 ° C). Thus, pure water again had a slightly lower maximum density than 1,000 kg / l.
In 1964 at the 12th CGPM the definition of 1793 was restored, since then a liter has been exactly one cubic decimeter again and water has a density of 0.999 as before 1901 975 kg / l.
In 1979, at the 16th CGPM, the alternative symbol L (capital letter L) was approved for the liter , at the same time the wish was expressed to keep only one of the two symbols (lower case or upper case) in the future. Most recently in 1990 it could only be determined that it was still too early to make a decision.
- Duden: Liter
- Duden entry Abbreviations, abbreviations and standardized abbreviations
- SI brochure: The International System of Units , Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt: PTB-Mitteilungen 117 (2007), Issue 2 (PDF file; 1010 kB)
- enacted on the basis of EU Directive 80/181 / EEC in the states of the EU or the federal law on metrology in Switzerland
- Duden - The large dictionary of the German language . Bibliographisches Institut & FA Brockhaus AG, Mannheim 2000, ISBN 3-411-71001-2 .
- Bureau international des poids et mesures (BIPM) : Le Système international d'unités (SI) , 9e édition 2019, 
- ISO 80000-1 : 2009, Quantities and units - Part 1: General, November 15, 2009
- ISO 80000-3 : 2006, Quantities and units - Part 3: Space and time, March 1, 2006
- ER Cohen, T. Cvitaš, JG Frey, B. Holmstrom, K. Kuchitsu, R. Marquardt, I. Mills, F. Pavese, M. Quack, J. Stohner, HL Strauss, M. Takami, AJ Thor: Quantities , Units and Symbols in Physical Chemistry , IUPAC Green Book, 3rd Edition, 2nd Printing, IUPAC & RSC Publishing, Cambridge 2008
- DIN 1301-1: 2010-10 units - Part 1: Unit names, unit symbols, October 2010
- Resolution of the 3rd meeting of the CGPM (1901) ( online , accessed March 1, 2020).
- Resolution 6 of the 12th meeting of the CGPM (1964) ( online , accessed March 1, 2020).
- Resolution 6 of the 16th meeting of the CGPM (1979) ( online , accessed March 1, 2020).