**Excel Exponents (Table of Contents)**

## Introduction to Exponents in Excel

Exponents in Excel are one of the oldest concepts in Mathematics and are a very powerful one as you have to deal with powers. They are basically a shorthand notation for repetition or to depict how many times a number is getting multiplied to itself. For e.g., 2^{3 }means we need to multiply 2 three times i.e. 2 x 2 x 2 yielding the output 8.

The 2 in the above example is referred to as a base while 3 is referred to an exponent or power or index and it is often read as 2 raised to the power 3.

In the below examples, we will learn about the different techniques to use exponents in excel and some more benefits associated with them.

**How to use Exponents in Excel?**

We can use Exponents in Excel in different ways. Let’s understand How to use Exponents in Excel with some examples.

#### Exponents in Excel – Example #1

**Using POWER() function**

One of the basic methods to use Exponents in Excel is using the POWER function. The function has two arguments as shown below:

**POWER (number, POWER)**

So, if we want to write 2^{3} we will write it as POWER(2,3).

Let’s see how it looks in excel.

**Step 1:** Click on the cell where you wish to write the formula.

**Step 2**: Enter the formula below in the destination cell.

And as you press **Enter**, you will get the desired output or result.

#### Exponents in Excel – Example #2

**Use of Nested POWER functions**

The above example was quite easy to understand the functionality of the POWER function. In this new example, we are going to learn the use of power function inside another power function.

To understand the concept in-depth, let’s solve a mathematical equation, and then we will learn how to do the same thing in excel.

**(2 ^{3})^{4} = (2 x 2 x 2)^{4} = (8)^{4} = 8 x 8 x 8 x 8 = 4096**

We should note that the order of brackets is very important and they can alter our results. We will see this in the below example using the above mathematical equation.

**Step 1**: Click on the cell where you want to insert the formula.

**Step 2**: Enter the formula below in the selected cell.

And then press **Enter**, you will get the desired output or result.

In case we have something like (2)^{32 }then we need to use the below formula and it will give us different results:

**Step 1**: Click on the cell where you want to insert the formula.

**Step 2**: Enter the formula below in the selected cell.

Once you press **Enter**, you will get the desired output or result.

The above two examples clearly show the difference between (2^{3})^{4 }and (2)^{32}

Also, you can use multiple POWER functions as per the need.

#### Exponents in Excel – Example #3

**Using shorthand notation “^”**

The other easy and most useful way to calculate exponents in excel is by using the shorthand notation “^” as shown below:

Let’s assume we have the same example, 2^{3}, and we will write it as 2^3. Let’s see how we can write this up in excel:

**Step 1:** Click on the cell where you wish to calculate.

**Step 2**: Enter the formula below in the selected cell.

And as you press **Enter**, you will get the desired output or result.

This formula is simple from the POWER function and it is very easy to use it.

**Using ^ for multiple exponents**

As we learned the use of multiple POWER function above, similarly we are going to learn the use of “^” for multiple exponents and as we have seen that the brackets play a very crucial role in the calculations we need to be very careful while calculating such formulas. Now let’s take a glimpse of a few examples:

#### Exponents in Excel – Example #4

**Mathematical equation: **(2^{3})^{4}

Below are the steps that will lead our way:

**Step 1:** Click on the cell where you wish to calculate.

**Step 2**: Enter the formula below in the selected cell.

As you press **Enter**, you will get the desired output or result.

#### Exponents in Excel – Example #5

For the numbers like (2)^{32}, we need to use the formula as shown below:

**Step 1:** Click on the cell where you wish to calculate.

**Step 2**: Enter the formula below in the selected cell.

When pressed **Enter**, you will get the desired output or result.

#### Exponents in Excel – Example #6

**Using Exponents as superscript**

In the above examples, we learn how we can do calculations using exponents in excel. But sometimes we have to use the exponents in textual cells and we refer to them as superscript which is a character, smaller in size as compared to the other characters and slightly above the line in which we are typing.

Most of the time the superscript text is used as a marker to differentiate the text or if we need to highlight any point.

In the below steps we are going to learn how to write superscripts in excel:

**Step 1:** Click on the cell where you wish to write.

**Step 2**: Click on the **Home** tab as highlighted in below image:

**Step 3**: Under the **Home** tab, click on the dropdown next to General to select **Text**.

This will change the format of the cell to Text format.

**Step 4**: Now, type the text or number along with the exponent with space as shown below and Highlight the number we want to use as a superscript as shown below:

**Step 5**: Again click on the Home tab and then click on the bottom-most arrow in the** Font** section to expand it as shown below:

**Step 6**: The pop-up window will appear. Then Select the** Superscript** which is present under **Effects** and press **OK.**

And after pressing **Enter** you will get the desired output as shown below:

This is how we use exponents for different calculations and as superscript.

**Things to remember about Exponents in Excel**

- It is preferred to use
**^**notation for exponents as compared to the POWER() function. But while using “^”, we need to be very careful with the use of brackets as little here and they can yield different results and might skew the other calculation dependent on the exponent. - While using multiple
**POWER()**functions, we need to take care if we need the insert as a “number” argument or POWER argument. This is again a similar case as above in which the results will be totally different.

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