Ch.1 - Intro to General ChemistryWorksheetSee all chapters
All Chapters
Ch.1 - Intro to General Chemistry
Ch.2 - Atoms & Elements
Ch.3 - Chemical Reactions
BONUS: Lab Techniques and Procedures
BONUS: Mathematical Operations and Functions
Ch.4 - Chemical Quantities & Aqueous Reactions
Ch.5 - Gases
Ch.6 - Thermochemistry
Ch.7 - Quantum Mechanics
Ch.8 - Periodic Properties of the Elements
Ch.9 - Bonding & Molecular Structure
Ch.10 - Molecular Shapes & Valence Bond Theory
Ch.11 - Liquids, Solids & Intermolecular Forces
Ch.12 - Solutions
Ch.13 - Chemical Kinetics
Ch.14 - Chemical Equilibrium
Ch.15 - Acid and Base Equilibrium
Ch.16 - Aqueous Equilibrium
Ch. 17 - Chemical Thermodynamics
Ch.18 - Electrochemistry
Ch.19 - Nuclear Chemistry
Ch.20 - Organic Chemistry
Ch.22 - Chemistry of the Nonmetals
Ch.23 - Transition Metals and Coordination Compounds

Scientific notation is used to turn small or large inconvenient numbers into manageable ones. 

Concept #1: Understanding Scientific Notation


Now, majority of you may remember scientific notation in algebra or from of course you recently take it. Now, scientific notation is a way of changing very large or very small numbers into more manageable ones, scientific notation is really a simple type of idea, but it's going to form the basis of all our chemical calculations from this point on. Now, in order to understand scientific notation you just have to remember the three components that make it up. So, let's take a look at this number, we have 6.88 times 10 to the negative 12, we're going to say the first number 6.88 is called the coefficient and the thing about the coefficient is, the coefficient must be greater than or equal to 1 but less than 10. So, that's the range that we're dealing with, we're going to say that the second number, which is the 10, is known as the base and when it comes to scientific notation the base is always 10, that's not ever going to change, finally we're going to say in 6.88 times 10 to the negative 12, the negative 12 number is known as our exponent. So, those are the three portions that make up any scientific notation number that you're given. So, just remember the guidelines for some of them and you'll be fine.

A scientific notation value is comprised of 3 parts: the coefficient, base and exponent

Example #1: Convert the following numbers into scientific notation.