When I write scientific content that uses measurement units I usually refers to the following guidelines for the typesetting:


  • There should be a space between the numeric value and the measurements unit
  • No Italic, the symbols for units and SI prefixes are roman
  • A dot is sometimes used to separate the units symbols multiplied

But I am not sure what is the best way to transform these guidelines into LaTeX code. So far I've been using a code like this:

3.98~\mathrm{m \cdot kg \cdot s^{-3} \cdot A^{-1}}

That leads to:

enter image description here

Is this the best way to express unit measurements in publications?

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    Read siunitx documentation. It's pretty flexible. If you want the dot, just add \sisetup{inter-unit-product = \ensuremath{{}\cdot{}}}. – Manuel Aug 22 '16 at 13:42

In my opinion the best way to typeset (SI-)units is the siunitx package by Joseph Wright. It is very elaborate and lets you customize the behaviour of the display command \SI{value}{unit} – please read the documentation…there are way to many features in this awesome package to explain everything in full detail in one post.

Your example would 'translate' to


Simple and beautiful…

  • 2
    @GM You can configure it to do so, see section 5.12 of the manual. And NIST says "A space or half-high dot is used to signify the multiplication of units". (emphasis mine) – Torbjørn T. Aug 22 '16 at 13:40
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    What do you mean by 'dot notation'? The \cdot command you used to seperate the units? Of cours siunitx does support that! Just use \si[inter-unit-product = \ensuremath{{}\cdot{}}] {3.98}{\meter\kilogram\per\cubic\second\per\ampere} or set the option globally – Fabian A. Aug 22 '16 at 13:43
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    @FabianA. \SI[<options>]{<value>}{<unit>}. The lowercase version (\si[<options>]{<unit>}) is for typesetting only a unit, without a value. – Torbjørn T. Aug 22 '16 at 13:48
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    Note the unit is called 'metre' not 'meter': the latter is allowed by the package – Joseph Wright Aug 22 '16 at 17:00
  • 1
    @JosephWright are you sure of what are you talking about? Are you familiar with the package? ;-) – G M Aug 22 '16 at 17:36

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