# Scientific notation, and an exponent question

1. Jul 25, 2013

### Tyrion101

I'm curious but usually negative exponents mean you're going to put those numbers on the bottom (sorry forgot the exact term it is much earlier than I normally get up) (example 6^-1 =1/6 so why is scientific notation different? Or is it? (Ex: 5x10^-3=.005)

2. Jul 25, 2013

### Infrared

Scientific notation works the same way. $5 \cdot 10^{-3}=\frac{5}{10^3}=.005$

The term you are looking for may be "denominator".

3. Jul 25, 2013

### Tyrion101

So I'm just not thinking about it in the right way. The fraction should have been a clue perhaps?