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I'm making a data table and need to include my error bars with my data. $\pm$ works great if the upper and lower bounds are the same, however, several of my data points has a different upper limit than lower. In papers I've read, I've seen plenty of uncertainties expressed as plus x minus y stacked on top of one another with the $\pm$ sign. Could someone tell me how to typeset such a thing?

I'm using a journal-specific document type (aastex) and the deluxetable coding.

3 Answers 3

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Do you mean something like

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}
\begin{document}
 $1.23\substack{+0.4 \\ -0.5}$\,pb
\end{document}

(I've been asked about this for siunitx, but have never really worked out what it actually means or a good interface for an 'automated' approach.)

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  • 1
    How about the following interface? \num[statistical={+0.2,-0.3}, systematic=0.1] 1.24, with appropriate options to control the output.
    – Aditya
    Commented Sep 18, 2012 at 17:01
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How about just using subscripts and superscripts?

$3.6^{+1.1}_{-1.4}$
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Had the same issue, but wanted the uncertainties to not extend outside the original text height too much. As with the use of simple super- and subscript:

$1.06^{+0.04}_{-0.05}$

An alternative (that turned out to be quite useful in tables where vertical spacing is a problem) can be accomplished with raisebox and reducing the fontsize.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}
\begin{document}
    $1.06${\raisebox{0.5ex}{\tiny$\substack{+0.04 \\ -0.05}$}} or 
    $1.06${\raisebox{0.5ex}{\tiny$^{+0.04}_{-0.05}$}
    as opposed to $1.06^{+0.04}_{-0.05}$
\end{document}

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