Algebra the Use of Scientific Notation Discussion Chapter

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The use of scientific notation is common in some fields, astronomy being one of them. For example, in the paper Hard X-rays and gamma rays from type IA supernovae, by Hoflich, Wheeler and Khokhlov (1997), this notation is used to express the flux on supernovae as a function of distance. The notation used in Table 2 is of the type: 4.8E -- 05. This would be written in standard notation as 0.000048.

In the work Light quark physics from lattice QCD (Lalho, 2010) makes use of scientific notation as well, such as -1.5e+09. This notation can be translated into standard notation as -1,500,000,000. One would actually need to be a physicist to understand the context in which the notation is used, as the vocabulary in that field is quite specialized.

Both of these fields -- astronomy and physics -- frequently make use of scientific notation. In astronomy, there are multiple concepts that can be reflected using this notation. While distances are vast in space, there are often units of measure, such as light years, that can be used by scientists to describe the vastness without the use of scientific notation. The example above is an illustration of one use, however, in the measurement between waves of light. This typically would be a very small measure, so scientific notation is used to make the numbers more readable.

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In physics, both scientific notation is used for numbers both large and small. The example provided relates to a large negative number, but when dealing with particles like quarks the numbers can be big or small depending on the particular thing being measured. The use of scientific notation is therefore quite common in physics.

Discussion Chapter on Algebra the Use of Scientific Notation Is Assignment

In general, it appears that scientists are most likely to use scientific notation for their numbers. When examining other fields, we see that different forms of notation are used. In business, financial statements are often noted as being "in $000s unless where noted" as… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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