What are the basic prefixes used in the metric system, and what do they mean?
These are prefixes commonly used in the metric system for quantities that are very small:
centi- is one-hudredth. For example, 5 cm (centimeters) equals 0.05 meters.
Milli- is one-thousandth. For example, 5 milligrams equals 0.005 gram.
Micro- is one-millionth. For example, 5 `muA` (microAmperes) is 0.000005 Amperes. This is a unit in which electric current is measured.
Nano- is one-billions. For example, 5 ns (nanoseconds) equals 0.000000005 seconds.
Occasionally you might also see such prefixes as pico- (`10^(-12))`
and fempto- (`10^(-15)).`
The following are the prefixes that are commonly used in the metric system for quantities that are very large:
kilo- is thousand. For example, 5 kg (kilogram) equals 5,000 gram.
Mega- is million. For example, 5 MW (megawatts) is 5,000,000 Watts. This is a unit in which electric power is measured.
Giga- is billion. For example, 5 gigabytes is 5,000,000,000 bytes. Even though I am not sure if the units for measuring data officially belong to the metric system, the prefix is still the same.
Occasionally you might also see such prefixes as tera-, `10^12`
and peta-, `10^15.`
Commonly used metric prefixes for large quantities are :
Deca Symbol da means Ten `10^1`
Hecto Symbol h means Hundred `10^2`
Kilo Symbol K means Thousand `10^3`
Mega Symbol M means Million `10^6`
Giga Symbol G means Billion `10^9`
Tera Symbol T means Trillion `10^12`
Peta Symbol P means Quadrillion `10^15`
Commonly used metric prefixes for small quantities are :
deci Symbol d means one-tenth `10^-1`
centi Symbol c means one-hundredth `10^-2`
milli Symbol m means one-thousandth `10^-3`
micro Symbol `mu` means one-millionth `10^-6`
nano Symbol n means one-billionth `10^-9`
pico Symbol p means one-trillionth `10^-12`
femto Symbol f means one-quadrillionth `10^-15`
A metric prefix is a modifier on the root word and it tells us the unit of measure. For example, centigram means we are count in steps of one one-hundredth of a gram, μg means we count by millionths of a gram.