Significant figures ?

  • Thread starter gunblaze
  • Start date
o:) ok...

So We got 2 number (i) 34500000000 & (ii) 30.4 <both to 3 sig fig>

is zero considered a significant figure in this case...? If it is, then why do we include the zeros in 34500000000, if it is not, why, 30.4 and not 30.44?
zero in the middle of non-zero numbers is always counted as a sigfig
but if it's the last number.. then it may or may not be counted as sigfig
if it's the first one, it is not a sigfig (e.g 0.0002 --> 1 sigfig)


Gold Member
The basic idea behind the rules is that if zero is merely acting as a place-holder, it isn't counted as significant. The rules rely partially on convention to remove ambiguity, so there really is no substitute for just learning the [Broken].
As tigger said, (i) is ambiguous as written. See Rule 5 in the link.
Last edited by a moderator:

Physics Forums Values

We Value Quality
• Topics based on mainstream science
• Proper English grammar and spelling
We Value Civility
• Positive and compassionate attitudes
• Patience while debating
We Value Productivity
• Disciplined to remain on-topic
• Recognition of own weaknesses
• Solo and co-op problem solving

Hot Threads