Names for Big Numbers
Date: 02/11/97 at 13:12:15 From: Craig Kesselheim Subject: Names for big numbers Dear Dr. Math - I've just been working with a team of grade 1 teachers at Bar Harbor, Maine, and we are wondering about the names for large numbers whose names end in "illion." After trillion, how far can you go with genuine math names (we got to quadrillion, quintillion, sextillion and septillion, but after that the dictionary and our own knowledge gave out). Thanks in advance for your help. Craig Kesselheim, Science Facilitator Mt. Desert, ME
Date: 02/13/97 at 20:03:06 From: Doctor Toby Subject: Re: Names for big numbers After septillion, and following the same pattern, come: octillion nonillion decillion undecillion dodecillion, tredecillion quattuordecillion quindecillion sexdecillion septendecillion octodecillion novemdecillion vigintillion unvigintillion dovigintillion trevigintillion quattuorvigintillion quinvigintillion sexvigintillion septenvigintillion octovigintillion novemvigintillion trigintillion untrigintillion dotrigintillion tretrigintillion quattuortrigintillion quintrigintillion sextrigintillion septentrigintillion octotrigintillion novemtrigintillion You may also want to know about one googol, which is 1 followed by 100 zeros, or ten dotrigintillion. A googolplex is 1 followed by a googol zeros. There are not enough elementary particles in the known universe to write down a googolplex. (There are fewer than a trigintillion such particles, but we need to make ten dotrigintillion one digits.) But it also depends on whether you are using the U.S. or the British system. In the U.S., octillion, nonillion, decillion, undecillion, dodecillion, tredecillion, quattuordecillion, quindecillion, sexdecillion, septendecillion, octodecillion, novemdecillion, take you into the 21st period (10^60). I found vigintillion as the next one (10^63) and the largest I could find was centillion (10^303). I imagine there is something like milletillion (10^3003) as well (1000 tillion). I looked it up - centillion in the British system is 10^600 (but they have thousand million instead of billion, etc). By the way, the power of ten is also the number of places (or zeros) following the lead digit. After vigintillion come unvigintillion, dovigintillion, and so on. After novemvigintillion comes trigintillion, which is followed by untrigintillion through novemtrigintillion. One googol = 10^100; this is ten dotrigintillion in America or ten thousand sexdecillion in Britain. -Doctor Toby, The Math Forum Check out our web site! http://mathforum.org/dr.math/
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