Sig Fig when converting C to K

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Sig Fig when converting C to K

Postby ysteve8 » Tue Jan 27, 2015 11:16 pm

So when we are given a Celsius and we need to convert it, say for example 30'C -> 303K and we need to use the temperature in our calculation (division in this case). And so we had (for example) 5.00/303K = 0.016501...

Would the final answer be 0.016 (2 s.f) because it was 30'C (the lowest given S.F) or would it be 0.0165 (3 s.f) because it was 303K?

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Re: Sig Fig when converting C to K

Postby martha-1I » Tue Jan 27, 2015 11:24 pm

I would say it would be 2 sig figs, but usually the temperature ratio isn't the answer so you wouldn't need to consider sig figs for it. Just plug in as much of the ratio as you can to get you an accurate answer.

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Re: Sig Fig when converting C to K

Postby Chem_Mod » Thu Jan 29, 2015 1:05 am

Use the significant figures associated with the temperature in Kelvin.

Recall that when adding/subtracting numbers, you don't round sig figs, but rather, just round to the least accurate decimal place. So 25°C becomes 298 K with three significant figures, since 25 + 273.15 should be rounded to no decimal places.

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