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Order of magnitude

  1. Jun 7, 2003 #1
    In maths, what is meant by Order of magnitude, symbol O .
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 7, 2003 #2


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    Orders of magnitude indicate the size of something in powers of ten within a factor of ten. For example;

    By "X exceeds Y by n orders of magnitude" is meant that X is at least 10^n but less than 10^(n+1) times greater than Y.

    By "X is within n orders of magnitude of Y" is meant X is less than 10^(n+1) but greater than 10^-(n+1) times Y.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2003
  4. Jun 8, 2003 #3
    If you see an expression like


    The O means that there are terms to the third power and higher that are drop.

  5. Jun 8, 2003 #4


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    This is different than order of magnitude.
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