Excel has a convenient function to convert between systems of units. The **CONVERT **function will save you the effort of looking up conversion factors elsewhere. It can convert between units for many different quantities. We’ll cover a few examples, but a complete list of units recognized by the **CONVERT **function can be found here. The syntax for **CONVERT **is:

**CONVERT(number, from_unit, to_unit)
**

**number: the number to be converted
**

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**from_unit: the original units of number
**

**to_unit: the desired units for the result
**

In the “Simple Units” tab of Worksheet 03u, there are three example conversions:

To convert from liters to gallons, begin with the function **=CONVERT(**. The first argument is the quantity to convert; in this case, cell C3.

**=CONVERT(C3,**

Next, specify the units that you’re converting from and the units you’re converting to. These can be entered as a “string” or text enclosed in double quotation marks. Excel will give you a drop down menu to select from, or you can type it in. In this case, the units are the same as what’s shown in the worksheet, so the formula becomes:

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**=CONVERT(C3,”L”,”gal”)**

Press Enter to see the conversion to gallons. The units are case sensitive, but Excel accepts both uppercase and lowercase “L” for liters.

If you have units entered into cells, you can use cell references instead of typing in the units. Of course, it’s helpful to always show units for documentation. To do an example using cell references, we’ll convert the length shown from inches to meters. Begin the formula with **=CONVERT(C6,**

The from_unit is located in cell D6, so click on that cell or type it in. Do the same for the to_unit argument using cell D7. The end result is:

**=CONVERT(C6,D6,D7)**

The only caveat to using cell references is that the units must be entered in the form that Excel will recognize. In the third example, we have a conversion from kilograms to pound mass (lbm). Repeat the same procedure as the last example:

** =CONVERT(C9,D9,D10)**

This method allows you to easily convert between units for your calculations.

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