This example problem demonstrates how to convert nanometers to meters, or nm to m units. Nanometers are a unit most commonly used to measure wavelengths of light. There are one billion nanometers (10^{9}) in one meter.

## Nanometers to Meters Conversion Problem

The most common wavelength of the red light from a helium-neon laser is 632.8 nanometers. What is the wavelength in meters?

**Solution:**

1 meter = 10^{9} nanometers

Set up the conversion so the desired unit will be canceled out. In this case, we want m to be the remaining unit.

distance in m = (distance in nm) x (1 m/10^{9} nm)

Note: 1/10^{9} = 10^{-9}

distance in m = (632.8 x 10^{-9}) m

distance in m = 6.328 x 10^{-7} m**Answer:**

632.8 nanometers is equal to 6.328 x 10^{-7} meters.

## Meters to Nanometers Example

It's a simple matter to convert meters to nanometers using the same unit conversion.

For example, the longest wavelength of red light (almost infrared) that most people can see is 7 x 10^{-7} meters.** **What is this in nanometers?

length in nm = (length in m) x (10^{9} nm/m)

Note the meters unit cancels out, leaving nm.

length in nm = (7 x 10^{-7}) x (10^{9}) nm

or, you could write this as:

length in nm = (7 x 10^{-7}) x (1 x 10^{9}) nm

When you multiply powers of 10, all you need to do is add together the exponents. In this case, you add -7 to 9, which gives you 2:

length of red light in nm = 7 x 10^{2} nm

This may be rewritten as 700 nm.

## Quick Tips for Nanometers to Meters Conversion

- Remember, if you're working with exponents, you simply add "9" to the meters value to get the answer in nanometers.
- If you write the number out, move the decimal point nine places to the left to convert nanometers to meters or to the right to convert meters to nanometers.