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Q: What are the rules in performing operations involving significant figures?

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20.2 has three significant figures.

5 significant figures.

6040 has 3 significant figures.

The simple rule is: no more significant figures than the least accurate of the values in the computation. For multiplication and division, the result should have as many significant figures as the measured number with the smallest number of significant figures. For addition and subtraction, the result should have as many decimal places as the measured number with the smallest number of decimal places. (Rounding off can be tricky, but that would be another thread)

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addition multiplication division subtraction

The least number of significant figures in any number of the problem determines the number of significant figures in the answer.

The least number of significant figures in any number of the problem determines the number of significant figures in the answer.

The answer depends on what operations were used. There should normally not be more significant figures in the answer than in any of the numbers used in the calculation.

you must know the correct amount of significant figures to round to because it will allow you to eliminate "insignificant" figures, which will shorten things up a bit when recording scientific information involving such figures.

4 significant figures.

There are 4 significant figures in 0.0032. Seems to be only 2 significant figures in this number.

There are 3 significant figures in 94.2.

There are four significant figures in 0.1111.

There are four significant figures in 0.005120.

0.0375 has three significant figures.