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Physical Science

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Can someone explain this rule in simple english please? "Rule for addition and subtraction: The rightmost significant figure in a sum or difference will be determined by the least accurate measurement."
Example: 18.56 m
- 13.2 m
__________
5.36 m = 5.4 m

  • Physical Science -

    The least accurate measurement is the 13.2 m in this case. Its accuracy is only +/- 0.05.

    Therefore the difference should be quoted with the same number of significant digits. In this case, it is the first number after the decimal point.

  • Physical Science -

    addition&subtraction= round to least number of decimal places

    multiplication&division=round to least number of significant figures present.

  • Physical Science -

    Suppose you are playing ice hockey in the middle of a totally frictionless frozen pond. How can you move yourself to the edge of the pond ?

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