The stere or stère is a unit of volume in the original metric system equal to one cubic metre. The name was coined from the Greek στερεός stereos, "solid", in 1793 France as a metric analogue to the cord. The stère is typically used for measuring large quantities of firewood or other cut wood,[1] while the cubic meter is used for uncut wood.[2] It is not part of the modern metric system (SI).

In Dutch, there is also a kuub, short for kubieke meter which differs from a stere. Whereas a "kuub" is a solid cubic metre, as it was traditionally used for wood, a stère is a cubic metre pile of woodblocks. A stère is less than a kuub or full cubic metre of wood, because the spaces between the woodblocks are included in a stère, while they do not count towards a kuub. In Finnish, the same unit is known as motti (from Swedish mått, "measure").

Note that the stère as used in contexts outside the timber industry is not subject to the same ambiguity.[3] In particular, stère and kilostère are sometimes used in hydrology, as the kilostere (1000 m3) is a slightly smaller metric analog of an acre-foot (≈ 1233 m3), similar to the relationship of the tonne and (short) ton.[4]

See also


  1. ^ Thierry Thomasset. "Le stère" (PDF). Tout sur les units de mesure [All about the units of measure] (in French). Université de Technologie de Compigne. Retrieved 2011-03-21. 
  2. ^ For example:"Rough guide to calculating timber volumes" (PDF). Forestry Commission. 
  3. ^ Webster 1913
  4. ^ [1] doi:10.1126/science.34.885.813