Orders of magnitude (time)

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Seconds[change | edit source]

Orders of magnitude (time)
Factor (s) Multiple Symbol Definition Comparative examples & common units Orders of magnitude
10−44 tP Planck time is the unit of time of the natural units system known as Planck units.[1] The shortest or earliest meaningful interval of time that theoretical physics can describe and consequently the youngest the known universe can be measured. ≈ 5.4×10−44 s. 10−44 s
10−24 1 yoctosecond ys[2] Yoctosecond, (yocto + second), is one quadrillionth (in the long scale) or one septillionth (in the short scale) of a second. 0.3 ys: mean life of the W and Z bosons.[source?]
1 ys: time for top quark decay.[source?]
1 ys: time taken for a quark to emit a gluon.
91 ys: half-life of lithium-4.[source?]
1 ys and less, 10 ys, 100 ys
10−21 1 zeptosecond zs Zeptosecond, (zepto + second), is one trillionth of one billionth of one second. 7 zs: half-life of helium-9's outer neutron in the second nuclear halo.
17 zs: approximate period of electromagnetic radiation at the boundary between gamma rays and X-rays.
300 zs: approximate typical cycle time of X-rays, on the boundary between hard and soft X-rays
1 zs, 10 zs, 100 zs
10−18 1 attosecond as 100 attoseconds: shortest measured period of time.[3][4] 1 as, 10 as, 100 as
10−15 1 femtosecond fs cycle time for 390 nanometre light, transition from visible light to ultraviolet 1 fs, 10 fs, 100 fs
10−12 1 picosecond ps 1 ps: half-life of a bottom quark
4 ps: Time to execute one machine cycle by an IBM Silicon-Germanium transistor (supercomputer)
1 ps, 10 ps, 100 ps
10−9 1 nanosecond ns 1 ns: Time to execute one machine cycle by an Intel Pentium 4 1 GHz microprocessor
1 ns: Light travels 12 inches (30 cm)
1,000,000,000 nanoseconds: 1 second
1 ns, 10 ns, 100 ns
10−6 1 microsecond µs sometimes also abbreviated µsec
1 µs: Time to execute one machine cycle by an Intel 80186 microprocessor
4-16 µs: Time to execute one machine cycle by an older minicomputer
1 µs, 10 µs, 100 µs
10−3 1 millisecond ms 4-8 ms: typical seek time for a computer hard disk
50-80 ms: Blink of an eye
150-300 ms: Human reflex response to visual stimuli
1 ms, 10 ms, 100 ms
10−2 1 centisecond cs
100 1 second s 1 s: "One Mississippi" said aloud
60 s: 1 minute
1 s, 10 s, 100 s
103 1 kilosecond
(16.7 minutes)
ks 3.6 ks: 3600 s or 1 hour
86.4 ks: 86 400 s or 1 day
604.8 ks: 1 week
103 s, 104 s, 105 s
106 1 megasecond
(11.6 days)
Ms month = 2.6 x 106 s
year = 31.6 Ms = 107.50 s ≈ π x 107 s
106 s, 107 s, 108 s
109 1 gigasecond
(32 years)
Gs century = 3.16 Gs ≈ π×109 s
millennium = 31.6 Gs ≈ π×1010 s
109 s, 1010 s, 1011 s
1012 1 terasecond
(32 000 years)
Ts eon = 31.6 Ts ≈ π×1013 s 1012 s, 1013 s, 1014 s
1015 1 petasecond
(32 million years)
Ps aeon = 31.6 Ps ≈ π×1016 s
435 Ps = 4.35×1017 s ≈ 13.8 billion years, the approximate age of the Universe
1015 s, 1016 s, 1017 s
1018 1 exasecond
(32 billion years)
Es 0.43 Es ≈ the approximate age of the Universe 1018 s, 1019 s, 1020 s
1021 1 zettasecond
(32 trillion years)
Zs 1021 s, 1022 s, 1023 s
1024 1 yottasecond
(32 quadrillion years)
Ys 1024 s, 1025 s, 1026 s and more

Years[change | edit source]

Orders of magnitude (time)
Factor (a) Multiple common units orders of magnitude
10−50 Planck time, the shortest physically meaningful interval of time ≈ 1.71×10−50 a 10−50 a
10−24 1 yoctoannum -- 1 ya and less, 10 ya, 100 ya
10−21 1 zeptoannum -- 1 za, 10 za, 100 za
10−18 1 attoannum -- 1 aa, 10 aa, 100 aa
10−15 1 femtoannum -- 1 fa, 10 fa, 100 fa
10−12 1 picoannum -- 1 pa, 10 pa, 100 pa
10−9 1 nanoannum 1 second = 3.17 × 10−8 a ≈ 10-7.50 a 1 na, 10 na, 100 na
10−6 1 microannum 1 minute = 1.90 × 10−6 a
1 hour = 1.40 × 10−4 a
1 ua, 10 ua, 100 ua
10−3 1 milliannum 1 day = 2.73 × 10−3 a
1 week = 1.91 × 10−2 a
1 ma, 10 ma, 100 ma
100 1 annum year = 1 annum
decade = 10 anna
century = 100 anna
1 a, 10 a, 100 a
103 1 kiloannum millennium = 1000 anna 103 a, 104 a, 105 a
106 1 megaannum epoch = 1,000,000 anna 106 a, 107 a, 108 a
109 1 gigaannum aeon = 1,000,000,000 anna
13.7 Ga = 1.37×1010 a ≈ 13.7 billion years, the approximate age of the Universe
109 a, 1010 a, 1011 a
1012 1 teraannum --- 1012 a, 1013 a, 1014 a
1015 1 petaannum --- 1015 a, 1016 a, 1017 a
1018 1 exaannum -- 1018 a, 1019 a, 1020 a
1021 1 zettaannum -- 1021 a, 1022 a, 1023 a
1024 1 yottaannum -- 1024 a, 1025 a, 1026 and more

References[change | edit source]

  1. Wikipedia contributors. Planck time. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. December 7, 2007, 05:55 UTC. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Planck_time&oldid=176315682. Accessed December 19, 2007.
  2. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000. Available at: http://www.bartleby.com/61/21/Y0022100.html. Accessed December 19, 2007. note: abbr. ys or ysec
  3. "Shortest time interval measured". BBC News. 25 February 2004. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/3486160.stm.
  4. "Fastest view of molecular motion". BBC News. 4 March 2006. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4766842.stm.