Problem: Which of the following numbers are exact numbers and therefore have an unlimited number of significant figures?EPA gas mileage rating of 26 miles per gallon

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We are asked if the EPA gas mileage rating of 26 miles per gallon is an exact number (i.e. unlimited number of significant figures).

Recall that exact numbers are either defined numbers or the result of a count

  • Examples of exact numbers are the following:
    • Conversions within the American system (such as pounds to ounces, the number of feet in a mile, the number of inches in a foot, etc).
    • Conversions with the metric system (such as kilograms to grams, the number of meters in a kilometer, the number of centimeters in a meter).
    • The words per and percent mean exactly out of one or one hundred, respectively.
    • Counted numbers are exact: there are two chairs in the photograph. There are fifteen books on the shelf. Eighty-seven people attended the lecture.
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Problem Details

Which of the following numbers are exact numbers and therefore have an unlimited number of significant figures?

EPA gas mileage rating of 26 miles per gallon

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What scientific concept do you need to know in order to solve this problem?

Our tutors have indicated that to solve this problem you will need to apply the Significant Figures concept. You can view video lessons to learn Significant Figures. Or if you need more Significant Figures practice, you can also practice Significant Figures practice problems.