# Significant Figures ```Name:_________________________________________________Pd:________Date:______________
Significant Figures
Significant figures are the digits in a reported value which are known for certain, as well as one
additional digit that is slightly uncertain. The table below lists rules for determining whether a digit is
significant. It can also be found in your text on pages 17-18.
How to determine significant figures:
1. All nonzero digits are significant.
1.23
432.12
2. Interior zeros (zeros between two nonzero numbers) are significant. 102.1
4001
3. Trailing zeros (zeros to the right of a nonzero number) that fall after a decimal point are significant.
12.00
700.6000
4. Trailing zeros that fall before a decimal point are significant.
4300.0 56000.
5. Leading zeros (zeros to the left of the first nonzero number) are NOT significant. They serve only to
locate the decimal point. 0.000023 0.007865
6. Trailing zeros at the end of a number with no decimal point are NOT significant. 100
408,000
Determine the number of “sigfigs” in the following numbers. Use the above table to assist you.
1. 0.02 m ________
7. 5000. mg ________
2. 0.040 g ________
8. 6051.00 L ________
3. 501 cm ________
9. 0.0005 dm ________
4. 501.0 cm ________
10. 0.1020 kg ________
5. 3001000000 molecules ________
11. 10001 mL ________
6. 8000 mg ________
12. 4.70 x 10-8 kg ________
13. Looking at the following measurements, which student is using the most precise device to find
the mass of a piece of metal?
A. 5 g
B. 5.0 g
C. 5.00 g
D. 5.000 g
E. 5.0000 g
14. Five measurements were taken for the mass of a piece of metal on five instruments of varying
precision. Could they all be the same piece of metal or are they guaranteed to be different
pieces by the results shown?
A. 5 g
B. 5.0 g
C. 5.01 g
D. 5.014 g
E. 5.0144 g
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