6. Technical Abbreviations, Acronyms, and
Units of Measurement
Follow these guidelines when abbreviating units of measurement:
- Do not abbreviate common American units of measurement, such as "inches," "pounds," and "feet," unless space conservation (such as within a table column) is an overriding concern.
- Use standard abbreviations for units of measurement with great care.
For example, the difference between Mb and MB is the difference between a megabit and a megabyte. Avoid this confusion by consistently spelling out a term like "megabyte" or by using the less-abbreviated form, "Mbyte."
- Be aware that most abbreviations for units of measurement already account for plurals.
For example, the abbreviation for 1 kilowatt and 10 kilowatts is written the same way: kW.
- If an abbreviation for a unit of measurement consists of more than one letter, leave a space between the numeral and the abbreviation, but if an abbreviation consists of only one letter, do not leave a space.
- Include the metric or U.S. equivalent of a unit of measurement, when appropriate.
1 in. (2.54 cm)
1m (3.2808 ft)