Scientific notation is a simple way to deal with long numbers. Because it's so common, you can expect to run into a few questions on the Mathematics Knowledge subtest on the ASVAB that involve scientific notation.

Practice questions

  1. If you multiply


    what is the result?


  2. What number does



    A. 854,345 B. 8,543,450 C. 0.0854345 D. 0.854345

Answers and explanations

  1. The correct answer is Choice (A).

    Multiply the numeric parts of the problem:


    Multiply the powers of ten by adding the exponents:


    Write the answer as the product of the two numbers:


    The first number isn't between 1 and 10, which means you need to move the decimal point one place to the left and add 1 to the exponent to arrive at


  2. The correct answer is Choice (D).

    The exponent is –3, which tells you that you need to move the decimal point three places to the left (a positive exponent tells you to move the decimal to the right).

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book author:

Angie Papple Johnston joined the U.S. Army in 2006 as a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear specialist, ready to tackle chemical weapons in a Level- A HAZMAT suit. She's currently the CBRN noncommissioned officer-in-charge of an aviation battalion in Washington, D.C.

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