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Numbers of Zeros in a Million, Billion, Trillion, and More

Learn How Many Zeros Are in All Numbers, Even Googol

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  • Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of Tennessee at Knoxville
  • B.A., Physics and Mathematics, Hastings College
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Have ever wondered how many zeroes are in a million? A billion? A trillion? Do you know how many zeros there are in a vigintillion? Someday you may need to know this for science or math class. Then again, you might just want to impress a friend or teacher.

Numbers Bigger Than a Trillion

The digit zero plays an important role as you count very large numbers. It helps track these multiples of 10 because the larger the number is, the more zeroes are needed. In the table below, the first column lists the name of the number, the second provides the number of zeros that follow the initial digit, and the third tells you how many groups of three zeros you would need to write out each number.

Name Number of Zeros Groups of (3) Zeros
Ten 1 (10)
Hundred 2 (100)
Thousand 3 1 (1,000)
Ten thousand 4 (10,000)
Hundred thousand 5 (100,000)
Million 6 2 (1,000,000)
Billion 9 3 (1,000,000,000)
Trillion 12 4 (1,000,000,000,000)
Quadrillion 15 5
Quintillion 18 6
Sextillion 21 7
Septillion 24 8
Octillion 27 9
Nonillion 30 10
Decillion 33 11
Undecillion 36 12
Duodecillion 39 13
Tredecillion 42 14
Quatttuor-decillion 45 15
Quindecillion 48 16
Sexdecillion 51 17
Septen-decillion 54 18
Octodecillion 57 19
Novemdecillion 60 20
Vigintillion 63 21
Centillion 303 101

All of Those Zeroes

A table like the one above can certainly be helpful in listing the names of all of the numbers depending on how many zeros they have. But it can be really mind-boggling to see just what some of those numbers look like. Below is a listing—including all the zeros—for the numbers up to decillion—a little more than just half the numbers listed in the above table.

Ten: 10 (1 zero)
Hundred: 100 (2 zeros)
Thousand: 1000 (3 zeros)
Ten thousand 10,000 (4 zeros)
Hundred thousand 100,000 (5 zeros)
Million 1,000,000 (6 zeros)
Billion 1,000,000,000 (9 zeros)
Trillion 1,000,000,000,000 (12 zeros)
Quadrillion 1,000,000,000,000,000 (15 zeros)
Quintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 (18 zeros)
Sextillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (21 zeros)
Septillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (24 zeros)
Octillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (27 zeros)
Nonillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (30 zeros)
Decillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (33 zeros)

Zeros Grouped in Sets of 3

Reference to sets of zeros is reserved for groupings of three zeros, meaning they are not relevant for smaller numbers. We write numbers with commas separating sets of three zeros so that it’s easier to read and understand the value. For example, you write one million as 1,000,000 rather than 1000000.

As another example, it’s much easier to remember that a trillion is written with four sets of three zeros than it is to count out 12 separate zeroes. While you might think that that one is pretty simple, just wait until you have to count 27 zeros for an octillion or 303 zeros for a centillion.

It is then that you will be thankful that you only have to remember nine and 101 sets of zeros, respectively.

Numbers With Very Large Numbers of Zeros

The number googol (termed by Milton Sirotta) has 100 zeros after it. Here’s what a googol looks like, including all of its required zeros:

Do you think that number is big? How about the googolplex, which is a one followed by a googol of zeros. The googolplex is so large it doesn’t have any meaningful use yet—it is larger than the number of atoms in the universe.  

Million and Billion: Some Differences

In the United States—as well as around the world in science and finance—a billion is 1,000 million, which is written as a one followed by nine zeros. This is also called the “short scale.”

There is also a “long scale,” which is used in France and was previously used in the United Kingdom, in which a billion means one million million. According to this definition of a billion, the number is written with a one followed by 12 zeros. The short scale and long scale were described by French mathematician Genevieve Guitel in 1975.

Learn how many zeros are in a million, billion, trillion, and other numbers, including the very largest ones, even googol.

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How Many Millions in a Billion? Billions in a Trillion?

Have you ever daydreamed about winning the lottery and asked yourself, “How many millions are in a billion? How many billions are in a trillion?”

Whether you’re planning on coming in to a substantial fortune or just looking to master your ability to count zeroes, this article will explain the million to billion difference and give you charts to help you easily calculate.

How Many Millions in a Billion: Quick Answer

If you’re looking to go from million to billion, you’ll need to multiply by 1,000. In other words, there are 1,000 millions in a billion.

1,000,000 * 1,000 = 1,000,000,000

There are six zeroes in a million (or two groups of three zeroes). There are nine zeroes in a billion (or three groups of three zeroes).

How Many Billions in a Trillion: Quick Answer

Just as there are 1,000 millions in a billion, there are 1,000 billions in a trillion.

1,000,000,000 * 1,000 = 1,000,000,000,000

That’s a lot of zeroes! There are nine zeroes in a billion (or three groups of three zeroes). There are 12 zeroes in a trillion (or four groups of three zeroes).

How Many Millions in a Billion: Charts for Reference

These charts depict the degree of difference from one thousand to one million, one million to billion, one billion to trillion, and so on.

Thousand

Million

Billion

Trillion

Quadrillion

Quintillion

Thousand

Million

Billion

Trillion

Quadrillion

Quintillion

Sextillion

Septillion

Octillion

Nonillion

Decillion

Sextillion

Septillion

Octillion

Nonillion

Decillion

Thousand

Million

Billion

Trillion

Quadrillion

Quintillion

Sextillion

Septillion

Octillion

Nonillion

Decillion

Million to Billion to Trillion: Comparison

When you’re dealing with numbers as big as one million, one billion, or one trillion, it can be hard to conceptualize exactly how big each number is. Let’s put them into more of a context:

One million is one thousand thousand. If you stacked one million pennies on top of each other, the tower would be about a mile high. If you divided one million dollars between everyone in the United States, each person would get about ⅓ of one cent.

One billion is one thousand millions. If you stacked one billion pennies on top of each other, the tower would be about 870 miles high. If you divided one billion dollars between everyone in the United States, each person would get about $3.33.

One trillion is one thousand billions. If you stacked one trillion pennies on top of each other, the tower would be about 870,000 miles high … which means it would reach to the moon and back and back to the moon again. If you divided one trillion dollars between everyone in the United States, each person would get about $3,000.

Let’s hope the world’s first trillionaire is a generous person!

What’s Next?

Want to brush up on any of your math topics ahead of the ACT? Check out our individual math guides to get the walk-through on each and every topic on the ACT Math test.

Running out of time on the ACT Math section? Our guide will help you learn how to beat the clock and maximize your ACT Math score.

Running out of time on the SAT Math section? Look no further than our guide to help you beat the clock and maximize your SAT Math score.

Have friends who also need help with test prep? Share this article!

Hayley Milliman is a former teacher turned writer who blogs about education, history, and technology. When she was a teacher, Hayley’s students regularly scored in the 99th percentile thanks to her passion for making topics digestible and accessible. In addition to her work for PrepScholar, Hayley is the author of Museum Hack’s Guide to History’s Fiercest Females.

How many millions make a billion? Check out our guide to million to billion conversions and relationships between other large numbers. ]]>