RG Grainger Teaching Written Work Guides Guide to Drafting a Manuscript Guide to being Lead Author of a Paper Check-list for Submitted Reports, Papers and Theses A Brief Guide to Style Writing Style Punctuation Spelling & Grammar Abbreviations & Acronyms Numbers & Units Mathematics Tables & Figures References Latex Tips Research Grainger Falls (printable)

# Numbers and Units

## Numbers

### Decimals

For decimals less than one use a leading zero.

0.27 not .27

### Figures or Words

• Generally spell out numbers below ten.
• Use figures with all abbreviated forms of units.
• Never start a sentence with a figure. To avoid spelling out large numbers recast the sentence.

### Ranges

For a span of numbers use an en rule, eliding to the fewest number of figures possible.

0–1, 132–6

Do not elide numbers in the group 10 to 19.

13–16, 1213–18.

## Units

Provided it is not non-dimensional a value in the text must have its associated unit.

### Spacing

Use a full space between a value and the unit. Separate components of the unit with a thin space.

9.87 m s-1 (9.87\ m\,s\$^{-1}\$)

A common latex mistake is to include the unit while still in math mode.

\$9.87\ m\,s^{-1}\$ typesets the unit in italics which is wrong

### Temperature

The degree symbol is printed close up to the scale abbreviation when given.

15 °C (15\ \$^{\circ}\$C).

In non-technical writing the scale is sometimes omitted in which case the degree symbol is printed close up to the number.

15° (15\$^{\circ}\$)

Values in Kelvin do not include a degree sign.

27 K (27\ K) not 27 °K

### Latitude and Longitude

The degree, minute and second symbols are printed close up to the number.

36° N, 155° 13’ 10” W

### Solidus

Do not use a solidus to indicate 'per'.

9.87 m s-1 (9.87\ m\,s\$^{-1}\$) not 9.87 m/s

Earth Observation Data Group, Department of Physics, University of Oxford. Page last updated: @21:16 GMT 03-Jan-2015