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The following list shows different orders of magnitude of force.

Since weight under gravity is a force, several of these examples refer to the weight of various objects. Unless otherwise stated, these are weights under average Earth gravity at sea level.

Below 1 N

Factor (N) Value Item
3.6×10−47 N Gravitational attraction of the proton and the electron in hydrogen atom[1]
8.9×10−30 N Weight of an electron[1]
1.6×10−26 N Weight of a hydrogen atom[1]
yoctonewton (yN)
5 yN Force necessary to synchronize the motion of a single trapped ion with an external signal measured in a 2010 experiment[2][3]
10−22 170 yN Force measured in a 2010 experiment by perturbing 60 beryllium-9 ions[4][5]
femtonewton (fN)
10−14 ~10 fN Brownian motion force on an E. coli bacterium averaged over 1 second[6]
~10 fN Weight of an E. coli bacterium[7][8]
10−13 ~100 fN Force to stretch double-stranded DNA to 50% relative extension[6]
piconewton (pN)
~4 pN Force to break a hydrogen bond[6]
~5 pN Maximum force of a molecular motor[6]
10−10 ~160 pN Force to break a typical noncovalent bond[6]
nanonewton (nN)
~1.6 nN Force to break a typical covalent bond[6]
8.2×10−8 N Force on an electron in a hydrogen atom[1]
2×10−7 N Force between two 1 meter long conductors, 1 meter apart by an outdated definition of one ampere
micronewton (μN)
1–150 μN Output of FEEP ion thrusters used in NASA's Laser Interferometer Space Antenna [9]
millinewton (mN)
10−2 19-92 mN Thrust of the NSTAR ion engine tested on NASA's space probe Deep Space 1[10]

1 N and above

Magnitude Value Item
newton (N) 1 N The weight of a smartphone[11] [12]
10 N 9.8 N One kilogram-force, nominal weight of a 1 kg object at sea level on Earth[13]
102 N 720 N Average force of human bite, measured at molars[14]
103 N
kilonewton (kN)
8 kN The maximum force achieved by weight lifters during a 'clean and jerk' lift[15] (During the clean part)
9 kN The bite force of one adult American alligator[16]
104 N 16.5 kN The bite force of a 5.2m Saltwater Crocodile[17]
18 kN The estimated bite force of a 6.1m adult great white shark[18]
25.5 to 34.5 kN The estimated bite force of a large 6.7m adult Saltwater Crocodile[19]
45 kN The force applied by the engine of a small car during peak acceleration
105 N 100 kN The average force applied by seatbelt and airbag to a restrained passenger in a car which hits a stationary barrier at 100 km/h[20]
890 kN Maximum pulling force (tractive effort) of a single large diesel-electric locomotive[1]
106 N
meganewton (MN)
1.8 MN Thrust of Space Shuttle Main Engine at lift-off[21][22][23]
1.9 MN Weight of the largest Blue Whale[1]
107 N 35 MN Thrust of Saturn V rocket at lift-off[24]
108 N 570 MN Simplistic estimate of force of sunlight on Earth[25]
109 N
giganewton (GN)
1020 N 2.0×1020 N Gravitational attraction between Earth and Moon[26]
1022 N 3.5×1022 N Gravitational attraction between Earth and Sun[27]


Hugh D. Young, University Physics 4th Ed, 1992, Addison-Wesley Publishing Co, Inc.
Knünz, S.; Herrmann, M.; Batteiger, V.; Saathoff, G.; Hänsch, T.; Vahala, K.; Udem, T. (2010). "Injection Locking of a Trapped-Ion Phonon Laser" (PDF). Physical Review Letters. 105 (1): 013004. Bibcode:2010PhRvL.105a3004K. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.105.013004. PMID 20867440.
"Single atoms for detecting extremely weak forces". Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics. Archived from the original on 2010-08-26. Retrieved 2010-09-02.
Brumfiel, G. (2010). "Scientists measure atomic nudge". Nature. doi:10.1038/news.2010.187.
M. J. Biercuk; H. Uys; J. W. Britton; A. P. VanDevender; J. J. Bollinger (9 Apr 2010). "YoctoNewton force detection sensitivity using trapped ions". arXiv:1004.0780. "detection of forces as small as 174 yN"
"Forces involved at the biological level". PicoTwist. Retrieved 30 December 2011.
"E. coli Statistics". The CyberCell Database. Archived from the original on 2011-10-27. Retrieved 2011-09-11.
Calculated: weight = mass * g = 1e-15 kg * 9.81 m/s^2 = 1e-14 N
"Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-02-12. Retrieved 2009-01-09.
"NSTAR Ion Thruster". NASA. Retrieved 9 January 2012. "thrust from 19 mN to 92 mN"
"Appendix B8—Factors for Units Listed Alphabetically". NIST Guide for the Use of the International System of Units (SI). NIST. Retrieved 9 January 2012.
Houston T E, Bite Force and Bite Pressure: Comparisons of Humans and Dogs, 2003 "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-01-24. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
The Human Machine By R. McNeill Alexander, Mark Iley, Sally Alexander
Erickson, G. M.; Lappin, A. K.; Vliet, K. A. (2003). "The ontogeny of bite-force performance in American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)" (PDF). Journal of Zoology. 260 (3): 317. doi:10.1017/S0952836903003819. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-06-07. 9452 N
"Crocodiles Have Strongest Bite Ever Measured, Hands-on Tests Show". Retrieved 15 March 2012. "The "winners"—saltwater crocodiles—slammed their jaws shut with 3,700 pounds per square inch (psi), or 16,460 newtons, of bite force."
"Great White Tops List of Hardest-Biting Sharks". Discovery News. Discovery Channel. Retrieved 21 January 2012. "a bite force of 9,320 Newton at the tip of its jaws and 18,216 N at the back of its jaws"
"Insights into the Ecology and Evolutionary Success of Crocodilians Revealed through Bite-Force and Tooth-Pressure Experimentation". Retrieved 14 March 2012. "scientifically documented 6.7-meter long Crocodylus porosus individuals were likely capable of molariform bite forces of approximately 27,531 N to 34,424 N (6,187 to 7,736 lbs)."
Lawrence Weinstein and John A. Adams, Guesstimation, 2008, Section 6.3.1
"Space Shuttle Main Engine". Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. Archived from the original on 14 November 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2013. "109% power level at sea level: 418,000 lb"
Wade, Mark. "SSME". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Retrieved 27 October 2011. "Launches normally used 104% ... as a maximum"
Calculated: 418000 lbf * 4.45 N/lbf * (104% launch power level / 109%) = 1.77e6 N.
"What Was the Saturn V?". NASA. Archived from the original on 10 November 2010. Retrieved 21 January 2012. "The rocket generated 34.5 million newtons ... of thrust at launch"
1.63 x 10−14 x gravitational attraction between Earth and Sun, assuming total absorption of sunlight Sunlight Exerts Pressure, NASA Glenn LTP Math & Science Resources
"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-02-17. Retrieved 2009-01-09.

External links


Orders of magnitude

Acceleration Angular momentum Area Bit rate Charge Computing Currency Current Data Density Energy / Energy density Entropy Force Frequency Illuminance Length Luminance Magnetic field Mass Molarity Numbers Power Pressure Probability Radiation Sound pressure Specific heat capacity Speed Temperature Time Voltage

See also

Back-of-the-envelope calculation Fermi problem Powers of 10 and decades
10th 100th 1000000th Billionth Trillionth Metric (SI) prefix Macroscopic scale Microscopic scale Quantum realm


Astronomical system of units Earth's location in the Universe Cosmic View (1957 book) To the Moon and Beyond (1964 film) Cosmic Zoom (1968 film) Powers of Ten (1968 and 1977 films) Cosmic Voyage (1996 documentary) Cosmic Eye (2012)

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