How Many 500 Nanometers Equal On Centimeter?


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Ken Moorhead Profile
Ken Moorhead answered
I will understand this question to mean

"What is the equivalent measure of 500 nanometers on the centimeter scale?"

The easiest way to get at these scales is by scientific notation (powers of ten).

For example, in scientific notation I could say that 20 meters is 2 x 10^1 meters. 10 to the first power is 10, then multiplied by 2 gives 20.

200 meters would be given as 2x10^2. 10 squared (10 to the second power, or 10 x 10) is 100. Multiplied by 2 gives me 200. 2x10^2 = 200.

The prefixes nano and centi explain which power of ten we will use for the scientific notation. A full list of SI prefixes and their corresponding powers of ten is given here on wikipedia: simplest way will be if we take an additional step and convert to the base unit of meters first.

1 nanometer is 1x10^-9 meters (or 1/1,000,000,000th of a meter; 0.000000001 meters)

So 500nm is 500x10^-9 meters or 0.0000005 meters

1 centimeter is 1x10^-2 meters (1/100th of a meter; 0.01 meters)
In other words, we can multiply a measure in meters by 100 to find its equivalent in centimeters.

Take 500x10^-9meters and multiply by 100

We have 50,000x10^-9 centimeters or 0.00005 centimeters

500 nanometers = 0.0000005 meters = 0.00005 centimeters = 5/100,000ths of a centimeter

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