Scientific Computing

Assignment 1

A Mole of Moles

A mole is both a unit of measurement and a small subterranean mammal. The unit of measure is used to represent amounts at the molecular level. Therefore, a single mole is a very large number, \(6.02214129 \times 10^{23}\). What happens if a mole is used to represent something we can see, like the mammal of the same name?


Create a program that prints information on a mole of moles. The program should calculate and print:

  1. how much a mole of moles weighs in grams. Assume all of the moles are star-nosed moles which weigh approximately 55 grams.

  2. how large a mole of moles is in liters. Since moles are mostly water, assume that a mole has the density of water, 1kg / L. Use your result from the previous calculation in this calculation.

  3. the diameter, in meters, of a mole of moles packed into a sphere. A sphere has volume \(v = (4 / 3) \pi r^{3}\) where \(v\) is the volume in meters cubed and \(r\) is the radius of the sphere. There are 1000 liters in a cubic meter. Use your result from the previous calculation in this calculation.

  4. the diameter of the moon, in meters, as a basis for comparison of how large a mole of moles is. You don’t have to calculate this, just research it.

The program should perform all of the necessary calculations (i.e. you should not do them on a calculator and simply print the result) and should use variables with clear names (i.e. not single letters). All output should be nicely formatted so that it is easy to read.


The assignment will be graded on the following requirements according to the course’s programming assignment rubric.

A functional program will:


Submit your program as a .py file on the course Inquire page before class on Tuesday January 31st.