What is a femtometer?

-April 19, 2007

UniverscaleElectronics engineers are used to dealing with nanometer distances while astronomers measure things in light years. Nikon has put these vastly different domains together on a Universcale website that allow you to scroll through and display sample objects from a proton all the way to the Milky Way galaxy. According to the introduction, “Today, using the electron microscope and astronomical telescope, we can see the objects which we have not been aware of its existence before. By setting them up against a scale, we are able to compare and understand things which cannot be physically compared.” Be forewarned, you may spend way too much time at the Universcale website.In case you were wondering: A femtometer is one quadrillionth of a meter, a million times smaller than nanometer. In engineering terms a femtometer is 10-15 meters. At the other end of Nikon’s “infinite yardstick” 1026 meters equals 100 billion light years.

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