Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Custom Formats for Scientific Notation.

Custom Formats for Scientific Notation

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 3, 2018)

5

Reid notes that he can display numbers using scientific notation and they appear in Excel in the format 1.23E+03 or 1.23E-03. He would like the scientific notation to be shown differently, such as 1.23x10^3 or 1.23x10^-3.

There is no way in Excel to change the way in which scientific notation is displayed. The only workaround is to use a formula to put together a text representation of what you want. For instance, if a value that uses Excel's scientific notation is stored in cell C7, you could use the following formula:

=LEFT(TEXT(D7,"0.00E+0"),3) & "x10^" & RIGHT(TEXT(D7,"0.00E+0"),3)

This formula essentially pulls the left portion of the number (the part before the E) and combines it with the right part of the number (the part after the E) together with the "x10^" notation. The result is considered a text string by Excel; it cannot be used in subsequent calculations.

If you needed to do quite a bit of formatting in this manner, it would be a relatively trivial matter to create a macro that returned the formatted text string based on the number. Create it as a user-defined function and you could then use it in your formulas.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9236) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Custom Formats for Scientific Notation.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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Comments

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What is 3 - 3?

2018-05-17 10:22:34

Yvan Loranger

Try =LEFT(TEXT(C7,"0.00E+0"),4) & "x10^" & RIGHT(TEXT(C7,"0.00E+0"),2)


2018-05-15 11:40:51

PFL

Youssef,
I did not anticipate the formula having a line break added in the commenting process.
There is no line break, just one line for the formula.
PFL


2018-05-15 11:37:44

PFL

Youssef,

Accepting the placement of the value in C7 as stated, try placing the formula as shown below in D7.

=LEFT(TEXT(C7,"0.00E+0"),3) & "x10^" & RIGHT(TEXT(C7,"0.00E+0"),2)

Play around with the formula noting the result to get a feel for what the formula does. When you determine what the formula parts are referencing, modify it to work wherever you want it to be used.
PFL


2018-05-15 08:52:33

youssef elhalaby

i could not use it , i tried many things.
if scientific number is stored in C7
please where i will enter the recommended equation and what is the D7 used in it, also is there spaces before and after &
please help in simple straight steps

thanks


2018-03-18 22:01:14

Sherry Reitz

Thanks for the help.


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