# One Penny

1
One penny. Most people in North America have seen them and you probably have one in your pocket right now. Using this small metal disk, with a size and weight familiar to almost everyone, let's take the next step. value width height thickness weight area 1¢, (one cent) 0.75 inches, (3/4 of an inch) 0.75 inches, (3/4 of an inch) 0.0625 inches, (1/16 of an inch) 0.1 ounces, (1/10 of an ounce) 0.5625 square inches How about sixteen? >>
home

Sixteen Pennies

or

16
Every journey begins with a single step. So, to get to big numbers, you have to start small. Lay sixteen pennies in a line and you have one foot, stack them and you have an inch. Okay, so much for the small numbers - let's move up. value width (side-by-side) height (stacked) thickness weight area (laid flat) 16¢, (sixteen cents) 12 inches, (one foot) 1 inch 0.0625 inches, (1/16 of an inch) 1.6 ounces 9 square inches Let's see a Thousand >>
home , 1

The MegaPenny Project
by kokogiak media Visualizing huge numbers can be very difficult. People regularly talk about millions of miles, billions of bytes, or trillions of dollars, yet it's still hard to grasp just how much a "billion" really is. The MegaPenny Project aims to help by taking one small everyday item, the U.S. penny, and building on that to answer the question: "What would a billion (or a trillion) pennies look like?" All the following pages have tables at the bottom, listing things such as the value of the pennies, size of the pile, weight, and area (if laid flat). All weights and measurements are U.S. standards, not metric. It's best to step through the project starting from the beginning, but if you'd like to just jump in, links are available below. Enter the MegaPenny Project Pages, in order: • One penny • Sixteen pennies • One Thousand pennies • Fifty Thousand pennies • One Hundred Thousand pennies • One Million pennies • Ten Million pennies • One Hundred Million pennies • One Billion pennies • Ten Billion pennies • One Hundred Billion pennies • Pennies Currently in circulation • One Trillion pennies • One Trillion (part II) • Empire State Building • Sears Tower • One Quadrillion pennies • One Quintillion pennies • Index, Table and Links • MegaMoo - a special bonus section

Various Awards

02.07.2002 (again)

Yediot Aharonot 04.15.2001

03.24.2001

startsiden.no 03.23.01

Guardian UK Web Watch 03.22.01

03.14.2001

One Thousand Pennies

[5 pennies wide x 5 pennies high x 40 pennies tall]

1,000

A thousand pennies is only \$10.00 worth of pennies, yet it weighs over six pounds. Now let's put together a cubic foot made of these copper (3%) and zinc (97%) coins. value width height thickness weight height stacked area (laid flat) \$10.00, (Ten dollars and no cents) 3.75 inches 3.75 inches 2.5 inches 100 ounces, (6.25 pounds) 62.4 inches, (5.2 feet) 562.5 square inches (3.9 square feet) Let's build a 12-inch cube >>
home , 1 , 2

Fifty Thousand Pennies

Forty-nine thousand one hundred and fifty-two Pennies [16w x 16h x 192 tall] - one cubic foot. Three hundred pounds of pennies. Remember the stack of 16 pennies? It was one inch tall. Well, take 12 of those and stack them and you'll have a one-foot-tall stack. The cube above is made up of 256 of those one-foot stacks, making one cubic foot of pennies. Remember this cube, since it will be the building block for all upcoming penny-structures you see in these pages. Now let's double it. value \$491.52 (Four hundred ninety-one dollars and fifty-two cents) 12 inches, (one foot) 12 inches, (one foot) 12 inches, (one foot) 4,915.2 ounces, (307.2 pounds) 3,072 inches, (256 feet) 192 square feet OK, now a Hundred Thousand Pennies >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3

49,152

width height thickness weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Hundred Thousand Pennies

Ninety-eight thousand three hundred and four Pennies [ Two cubic feet ] Doubling our 50,000 pennies to 100,000, we now have two one-foot cubes. Given, this wasn't a big jump, but now we're going to start climbing the numerical ladder by powers of ten. Ever wonder what a million pennies would look like? value width height thickness weight height stacked area (laid flat) \$983.04 (Nine hundred eighty-three dollars and four cents) 24 inches, (two feet) 12 inches, (one foot) 12 inches, (one foot) 614.4 pounds 512 feet 384 square feet One Million... >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4

98,304

One Million Pennies

One million, three thousand, seven hundred and seventy-six Pennies [ A wall five by four by one feet thick with a 9-inch cube stepstool ] Say hello to our friend Graham. Now that the pennies have really begun to pile up, he'll be standing in for scale. Graham is about 5 feet, 10 inches tall, and he weighs about 180 pounds, or about 35 times less than the 1 million pennies stacked beside him. Next step, Ten million. value \$10,037.76 (Ten thousand, thirty-seven dollars and seventy-six cents) Four feet Five feet 12 inches, (one foot) 6273.6 pounds (3.14 tons) 5,228 feet ( 0.99 Miles ) 3,921 square feet How about Ten Million? >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5

1,003,776

width height thickness weight height stacked area (laid flat)

Ten Million Pennies

Ten million, seventeen thousand and twenty-four Pennies [ A cube 6 x 6 x 6 feet ] Ten Million cents. If you laid these all out flat, side-by-side, like a huge carpet of pennies, it would nearly cover one acre. Click here for a look at 100,000,000 copper disks. value \$100,170.24 (One hundred thousand, one hundred seventy dollars and twenty-four cents) Six feet Six feet Six feet 31.3 tons 9.88 Miles 39,129 square feet (0.9 acres) One Hundred Million Pennies? >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6

10,017,024

width height thickness weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Hundred Million Pennies

One hundred million, sixteen thousand, six hundred and forty Pennies [ Two cubes, one 12x12x12 feet, the other 7x7x7 feet ] Since these cubes are mostly dense metal, their weight is impressive. One hundred million pennies weighs over 300 tons. For comparison, the largest living animal, the Blue Whale, weighs less than 150 tons as an adult. When you hear talk of "billions" of something (dollars, miles, people, etc), it's hard to visualize. But up next, we have a visual for you - one billion pennies. value \$1,000,166.40 (One million, one hundred sixty-six dollars and forty cents) 12 feet (7 feet) 12 feet (7 feet) 12 feet (7 feet) 312.5 tons 99 Miles 390,690 square feet (9 acres) One Billion with a "B" >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7

100,016,640

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Billion Pennies

One billion, eighteen thousand, one hundred and seventy-six Pennies [ Five school buses. ] Each of these blocks represents one 9x11x41 foot school bus - as seen below. If you were to stack all these pennies in a single pile, one atop the other, the stack would reach nearly one thousand miles high. For comparison, note that the Space Shuttle typically orbits only 225 miles above the Earth's surface.

1,000,018,176

Only in North America and the general scientific community is this number (1,000,000,000) called a "billion". Most European countries call this number either "one thousand million" or, in some cases, a "milliard". Enough international confusion, let's move on to ten billion. value \$10,000,181.76 (Ten million, one hundred eighty-one dollars and seventy-six cents) 45 feet 11 feet 41 feet 3,125 tons 987 Miles 3,906,321 square feet (89.7 acres) Next, Ten Billion Cents >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

Ten Billion Pennies

Ten billion, twenty-three thousand, five hundred and fifty-two Pennies [ Fifty school buses (as defined previously). ] Current estimates place the world's population at six billion people. The pile of pennies above would then be nearly enough for two pennies for every person on Earth. The U.S.Mint currently manufactures about this many pennies every year. In the image above, Graham and his ten billion coins are now standing on a standard U.S. football field (360 x 160 feet) for further scale. Next up, the hundred-billion cube. value \$100,000,235.52 (One hundred million, two hundred thirty-five dollars and fifty-two cents) 90 feet 11 feet 205 feet 31,250 tons 9,864 Miles 897 acres One Hundred Billion Pennies >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9

10,000,023,552

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Hundred Billion Pennies

One hundred billion, seventeen million, six hundred fifty-nine thousand three hundred and thirty-six Pennies [ One cube measuring 127 x 127 x 127 feet ] If you took these hundred billion pennies and laid them out like a carpet, you could cover 14 square miles. Compare that to Manhattan Island, which measures 22 square miles. The cube you see above is made up of over 4.1 million stacks of 24,330 pennies. Now, we are getting close to the limits of existing pennies. How many pennies do you think are currently in circulation? value \$1,000,176,593.36 (One billion, one hundred seventy-six thousand five hundred and ninety-three dollars and thirty-six cents) 126.72 feet 126.72 feet 126.72 feet 312,555.2 tons 98,660 Miles 8,969 acres Total Pennies now in circulation >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10

100,017,659,336

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

Two Hundred Billion Pennies

Two hundred billion, thirty-five million, three hundred eighteen thousand six hundred and seventy-two Pennies [ Two cubes, each measuring 127 x 127 x 127 feet ] Current estimates by the U.S. Mint place the number of pennies in circulation at around 140 billion. Others have estimated as many as 200 billion currently circulating. Since the first penny was minted in 1787, until present-day, over 300 billion pennies have been minted in the United States. So that leaves about 100 billion pennies that have been retired by the Mint, lost down sewer drains, stored in jars, smashed by trains, or collected by numismatists in the past 200 years. Now that we have reached the limits of what actually exists, let's move beyond, and into the Trillions. value \$2,000,353,186.72 (Two billion, three hundred fifty-three thousand one hundred and eighty-six dollars and seventy-two cents) 253.44 feet 126.72 feet 126.72 feet 625,110.4 tons 197,320 Miles 17,938 acres Into the abstract, One Trillion Pennies >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11

200,035,318,672

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Trillion Pennies

One trillion, sixteen thousand six hundred and forty Pennies [ One cube measuring 273 x 273 x 273 feet ] The same football field as the last two pages, set beside our new cube for scale. Notice our friend Graham, still barely visible as a speck at lower left. Let's look at this new cube a little more closely to get a better idea of its size. value \$10,000,000,166.40 (Ten billion, one hundred and sixty-six dollars and forty cents) 273 feet 273 feet 273 feet 3,125,000 tons 986,426 Miles 89,675.2 acres Further Comparisons -- How a trillion pennies stacks up >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12

1,000,000,016,640

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Trillion Pennies (part II)

One trillion, sixteen thousand six hundred and forty Pennies [ One cube measuring 273 x 273 x 273 feet ] From right to left (to scale), we have the same old football field, then the Lincoln Memorial (yes, the one pictured on the back of the penny), then the Washington Monument (555 feet tall), then our cube of one trillion pennies, then the Empire State Building (1,250 feet tall), then the Sears Tower (1,450 feet tall). So, now, the question you're dying to ask: How many Pennies would it take to fill the Empire State Building? value \$10,000,000,166.40 (Ten billion, one hundred and sixty-six dollars and forty cents) 273 feet 273 feet 273 feet 3,125,000 tons 986,426 Miles 89,675.2 acres Guess how many Pennies... >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12 , 13

1,000,000,016,640

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

The Empire State Building -- 1.8 Trillion Pennies

One trillion, eight hundred eighteen billion, six hundred twenty-four million Pennies

1,818,624,000,000

New york's Empire State Building contains 37 million cubic feet of space (minus the antenna structure). Using our cubic foot of pennies (49,152 total), it's just a simple multiplication problem - 37,000,000 x 49,152 = 1,818,624,000,000 pennies. Now what about America's tallest structure, the Sears Tower? value \$18,186,240,000.00 (Eighteen billion, one hundred eighty-six million, two hundred forty thousand dollars and zero cents) 5,683,200 tons 1,793,939 Miles 163,085 acres On to Chicago... >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12 , 13 , 14

total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

The Sears Tower -- 2.6 Trillion Pennies

Two trillion, six hundred twenty-three billion, six hundred eighty-four million six hundred and eight thousand Pennies

2,623,684,608,000

Chicago's Sears Tower occupies 53.4 million cubic feet of space. Using our cubic foot of pennies (49,152 total), it's once again just another multiplication problem - 53,379,000 x 49,152 = 2,623,684,608,000 pennies. Okay, enough with the buildings, let's take a giant leap forward. What would a cube of one quadrillion pennies look like? value \$26,236,846,080.00 (Twenty-six billion, two hundred thirty-six million, eight hundred forty-six thousand and eighty dollars) 8,199,014 tons 2,588,073 Miles 235,279.3 acres Now a Quadrillion >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12 , 13 , 14 , 15

total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One quadrillion, sixty-seven billion, eighty-eight million, three hundred and eighty-four thousand Pennies [ One cube measuring 2,730 x 2,730 x 2,730 feet ]

1,000,067,088,384,000

Here we have the buildings we used for scale back at a trillion, but they're now a bit dwarfed by our new cube of pennies. This is a quadrillion, or a thousand times one trillion. This cube is roughly a half-mile wide and would weigh an astonishing three billion tons. Okay, now for our final big number - one quintillion. value \$10,000,670,883,840.00 (Ten trillion, six hundred seventy million, eight hundred eighty-three thousand, eight hundred and forty dollars and zero cents) 2,730 feet 2,730 feet 2,730 feet 3,125,000,000 tons 986,426,768 Miles 89,675,161 acres Our final cube >>
home , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 , 12 , 13 , 14 , 15 , 16

width height thickness total weight height stacked area (laid flat)

One Quintillion Pennies

One quintillion, sixty-seven trillion, eighty-eight billion, three hundred and eighty-four million Pennies [ One cube measuring 27,300 x 27,300 x 27,300 feet ]

1,000,067,088,384,000,000

Now we've stepped up another factor of 1,000. One quintillion pennies. This many pennies, if laid out flat like a carpet, would cover the surface of the earth - twice. If you look hard, you can still see the Sears Tower and other buildings at lower right. Another way to see it is to realize that Mt. Everest (29,000 ft.) is only 1,700 feet taller than this 27,300-foot cube. This is as far as we will go. Three trillion tons of pennies is quite enough. To imagine larger cubes, (stepping by factors of 1,000), just imagine cubes roughly ten times larger than the last one. For instance, one quintillion pennies makes the cube above - about 5 miles on each side. If you step up to one sextillion, imagine a cube about 50 miles wide tall and thick. Thanks for visiting the MegaPenny Project. You can find further related links and a table of named "very big numbers" on our index page. value \$10,000,670,883,840,000.00 (Ten quadrillion, six hundred seventy billion, eight hundred eighty-three million, eight hundred and forty thousand dollars and zero cents) 27,300 feet 27,300 feet 27,300 feet 3,125,000,000,000 tons

width height thickness total weight

The MegaPenny Project
Home Kokogiak Media • Don't miss the latest - special MegaPenny bonus section, MegaMoo. Big Numbers Links: • Big Numbers (list one) • Big Numbers (list two) • Dots - from one to one million • Ask Dr. Math - big numbers Pennies Links: • CopperCoins.com - a 'Web Resource for all US Copper Coin Collectors'. • The United States Mint • People who want to do away with pennies • People who want to keep pennies around • Smashed pennies • Would you rather be paid one million dollars today, - or would you rather be paid one penny today (1¢), twice that tomorrow (2¢), twice that the next (4¢), etc. for 30 days? Find out here

Table of Very Big Numbers (from 1 to 10120 )
one 1 ten 10 hundred 100 thousand 1,000 million 1,000,000 billion 1,000,000,000 trillion 1,000,000,000,000 quadrillion 1,000,000,000,000,000 quintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 sextillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 septillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 octillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 nonillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 decillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 undecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 duodecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 tredecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quattuordecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quindecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 sexdecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 septendecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 octodecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 novemdecillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 vigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 unvigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 duovigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 trevigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quattuorvigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quinvigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 sexvigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 septenvigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 octovigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 novemvigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 trigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 untrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 duotrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 googol (google) 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 tretrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quattuortrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 quintrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 sextrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 septentrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 octotrigintillion 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000

Welcome to MegaMoo, a bonus section of the MegaPenny Project

One Million Cows?

One Holstein Cow

1

Here's Harriet, our model cow. She's an average adult Holstein, 4 1/2 feet tall, about 6 feet long from nose to rump, and about 3 feet wide. Harriet also weighs in at a healthy 1,500 pounds. Yes we're dealing with cows now, and not pennies. Why? Well, why not? Next up - Five Friendly Cows. value width height length total weight height stacked Priceless, just look at her. 3 feet 4.5 feet 6 feet 1,500 pounds 4.5 feet Cinco Vacas >>
back to megapenny

One Million Cows?

Five Holstein Cows

5

Harriet has brought in four more of her good friends. Since we're going to be stacking these hapless cows in the near future, we're encasing them in nice little force-field boxes (don't worry, they can breathe just fine). Next - Seventy-two Curious Cows. value width height length total weight height stacked Priceless 15 feet 4.5 feet 6 feet 7,500 pounds 22.5 feet 288 hooves >>
back to megapenny , MegaMoo 1

One Million Cows?

Seventy-two Holstein Cows

72

Now we're talking about a lot of cows. Luckily they stack nicely in their little boxes, otherwise it would be hard to see them all at once. These 72 cows lined up nose-to-tail would be 432 feet long As it is, these cows stack up into a neat cube that is 18 feet wide tall and deep. Next - MegaMoo (1,000,000 cows). value width height length total weight height stacked Priceless 18 feet 18 feet 18 feet 54 tons 324 feet One Million Cows >>
back to megapenny , MegaMoo 1 , MegaMoo 2

One Million Cows!

One million, two thousand, two hundred and forty Holstein Cows

1,002,240

Here is Harriet and her million closest cow friends. Over 750,000 tons of grass-munching, milk-giving animals on 4,008,960 hooves. They are lined up 96 cows tall, 145 cows wide and 72 cows deep.

For some perspective, we have them stacked next to our two famous skyscrapers: The Empire State Building (1,250 feet) and the Sears Tower (1,450 feet) (at right). Thanks for visiting MegaMoo, you may now rest easy. knowing what a million cows would look like. Back to - MegaPenny Project.

value width height length total weight height stacked
back to megapenny , MegaMoo 1 , MegaMoo 2 , MegaMoo 3

Priceless 435 feet 432 feet 432 feet 751,680 tons 852 miles