Trillion – what is it?

So, at this moment, many Americans are waiting to see if Congress can come through with a stimulus package; it is rumored to be up to, perhaps over, $2 trillion dollars.

What is that number, trillion? What does that mean?

1,000,000,000,000 (12 zeroes, 4 commas)
or 1012 (ten to the twelfth power)
a number equal to 1,000 times one billion
one thousand billion

How Long Ago Is a Trillion Seconds?

If you count backward, then:
1 million seconds = 12 days ago
1 billion seconds = 31 years ago
1 trillion seconds = 30,000 B.C.

How high is a trillion in $1000 bills?

If you stack a trillion-worth of $1000 bills together, then:
1 million dollars = 4 inches high
1 billion dollars = 364 feet high
1 trillion dollars = 63 miles high
(give or take a foot or two)
Note that this is a STACK, not laid end-to-end.

Let’s Measure a Trillion in Money

With about 305,000,000 people and 111,000,000 households in the U.S.

$1 Million is 1¢ per household,
$1 Billion is $3.28 per person and $9 per household,
$1 Trillion is $3,280 per person and $9,000 per household

If a person’s salary is $40,000 per year it would take:

25 years to earn $1 Million
25 Thousand years to earn $1 Billion,
25 Million years to earn $1 Trillion

 If you lived to be 80 years of age, to have:

$1 Million you would have to save $34 each day of your life,
$1 Billion you would have to save $34,000 each day of your life,
$1 Trillion you would have to save $34 Million each day of your life

One year of clock time = (60sec/min) x (60 min/hr) x (24 hr/da) x (365.25 da) = 3.16 x 107 sec

One trillion seconds of ordinary clock time = ( 1012 sec)/( 3.16 x 107 sec/yr) = 31,546 years!

Six trillion seconds equals 189,276 years. Now, as an aside, along with the nearly six trillion miles in the light-year, you might be interested to know that there are nearly five trillion dollars in the current U.S. national debt. Is it any wonder that our politicians in Washington are concerned?

(An interesting bit of trivia: If one were to count the national Debt at the rate of one dollar per second, he or she would have to use a mechanical counter to click off the digits. Why? Because, if he or she counted in the usual way, saying “one, two, three, …” etc., there would be numbers whose names are so large, that it would take more than a second of clock time to pronounce them. For example: “Nine hundred and ninety nine billion, nine hundred and ninety nine million, nine hundred and ninety nine thousand, nine hundred and ninety nine,” takes about 8 seconds to pronounce.)

How much is a trillion dollars?


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