Unexpectedly Intriguing!
August 28, 2020

There's a fun project going on among math bloggers and vloggers, who are presenting their favorite big numbers that are larger than one million, tagging their contributions with the #megafavnumbers hashtag.

Since we periodically cover math stories, our contribution is 602,214,076,000,000,000,000,000, which if you've had chemistry, you'll probably recognize more quickly in its scientific notation format: 6.02214076 x 10²³. It's Avogadro's constant, which tells us approximately how many atoms or molecules there are in a mole of a substance. A mole is the number of grams of a substance that is equal to its molecular weight, or rather, the number of protons and neutrons in its component atoms or molecules.

It was originally indexed to the mass of Carbon-12, which has 6 protons and 6 neutrons. One mole of carbon-12 therefore weighs 12 grams.

It used to be that the number of atoms in a mole wasn't exactly known, because counting the number of atoms in 12 grams of carbon-12 isn't as easy as it sounds. Scientists had narrowed the range of potential values down to fall within 100 quadrillion atoms of 602,214,150,000,000,000,000,000 (602.21415 sextillion), but on 20 May 2019, the International System of Units (SI) body arbitrarily fixed the value of Avogadro's number to exactly 6.02214076 x 10²³. We still don't know exactly how many atoms there are in an actual mole of a substance, but we now have a close approximation that the world's measurement experts have officially endorsed.

Avogadro's constant can be found in more places than just chemistry. Astrophysicst Alex Howe's #megafavnumbers contribution points to where it is used in statistical mechanics.

At this writing, there are over 153 entries in the #megafavnumbers video list, which take on illegal primes, the monster, and the case of too many lottery winners, among others! If you've run out of binge-able videos to watch during the pandemic, why not add a bunch of videos about really big numbers to your playlist? We'll award extra points if you watch them in order from lowest to largest....

Labels: ,

About Political Calculations

Welcome to the blogosphere's toolchest! Here, unlike other blogs dedicated to analyzing current events, we create easy-to-use, simple tools to do the math related to them so you can get in on the action too! If you would like to learn more about these tools, or if you would like to contribute ideas to develop for this blog, please e-mail us at:

ironman at politicalcalculations.com

Thanks in advance!

Recent Posts

Stock Charts and News

Most Popular Posts
Quick Index

Site Data

This site is primarily powered by:

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

CSS Validation

Valid CSS!

RSS Site Feed

AddThis Feed Button

JavaScript

The tools on this site are built using JavaScript. If you would like to learn more, one of the best free resources on the web is available at W3Schools.com.

Other Cool Resources

Blog Roll

Market Links

Useful Election Data
Charities We Support
Shopping Guides
Recommended Reading
Recently Shopped

Seeking Alpha Certified

Archives
Legal Disclaimer

Materials on this website are published by Political Calculations to provide visitors with free information and insights regarding the incentives created by the laws and policies described. However, this website is not designed for the purpose of providing legal, medical or financial advice to individuals. Visitors should not rely upon information on this website as a substitute for personal legal, medical or financial advice. While we make every effort to provide accurate website information, laws can change and inaccuracies happen despite our best efforts. If you have an individual problem, you should seek advice from a licensed professional in your state, i.e., by a competent authority with specialized knowledge who can apply it to the particular circumstances of your case.