Video: Determining the Number of Signifcant Figures

Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement: 0.007. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement: 14540.00. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement: 8.0 × 10⁵. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement: 57.0320. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement: 600.24.

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Video Transcript

Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement, 0.007. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement, 14540.00. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement, 8.0 times 10 to the fifth. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement, 57.0320. Determine the number of significant figures in the following measurement, 600.24.

Starting with our first number, 0.007, we identify seven as significant because it’s a nonzero digit. The other digits, based on the rule that leading zeros are not significant, are not significant figures themselves. So, this number has one significant figure.

Looking at our next number, 14540.00, we know the one, four, five, and four are significant since they’re nonzero. And the three trailing zeros, because this number has a decimal point, are also significant. This means that all seven figures in this number are significant.

In the third number, 8.0 times 10 to the fifth, eight is significant because it’s nonzero. And the zero is significant because it trails a number that has a decimal. The reported exponent, 10 to the fifth, does not add precision to this number. So, it has two significant figures.

In the fourth value, 57.0320, we highlight the nonzero numbers as significant. The first zero is also significant because it’s surrounded by nonzero numbers. And the last zero is significant as well because it’s a trailing zero in a number with a decimal point. So, all six of the figures in this number are significant.

Looking at our last number of 600.24, the six, two, and four are significant because they’re nonzero numbers. And the two zeros are also significant because they have nonzero numbers on either side. This means there are five significant figures in this number.

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