I know that I am overstepping my science-based boundaries with this, but as a person who is fascinated by most everything, I thought that you all might enjoy this. With all of the talk about our country’s massive deficit, have you every wondered what a trillion (or more) dollars would look like? Of course, our country is not actually dealing in physical money, simply numbers on various screens, stoically recording our spending habits. But if you have ever watched a heist movie or the news about our country’s deficit and wondered what such an exorbitant amount of cash would look like… well here you go.

\$100. We’ll start with a hundred dollar bill. Currently the largest U.S. denomination in general circulation. Approximately 29% of all notes produced in 2009 were \$100 bills. Notice the anti-counterfeiting measured implemented in 2009. The following pictures will attempt to show the scale of the money we are taking about. The thickness of one bill is around 0.0043 inches and it weighs about 1 gram.

\$10,000. A packet of one hundred hundred dollar bills measures .43 inches and weighs approximately a quarter of a pound.

\$1,000,000. Believe it or not, this next little pile is a million dollars (100 packets of \$10,000). You could stuff that into a grocery bag and walk around with it. The height of a stack of 1,000,000 one dollar bills measures 4,300 inches or 358 feet – about the height of a 30 to 35 story building. The weight of this cool million would be approx. 22 pounds (I could haul that out of a bank no problem).

\$100,000,000. While a measly 1 million dollars looked a little unimpressive, 100 million dollars is a little more respectable. It fits neatly on a standard pallet. The height of a stack of 100,000,000 (one hundred million) one dollar bills measures 35,851 feet or 6.79 miles. This would reach from the earth’s surface to the approximate altitude at which commercial jetliners fly. So the amount of money (in hundred-dollar bills) it would take to smash a couple of Lamborghinis every time you walked into a room (you got to make a grand entrance) would weigh around 2,205 pounds.

\$1,000,000,000. The height of a stack of 1,000,000,000 (one billion) one dollar bills measures 358,510 feet or 67.9 miles. This would reach from the earth’s surface into the lower portion of the troposphere – one of the major outer layers of earth’s atmosphere. In hundred-dollar bills, this would weigh 22,000 pounds!

\$1,000,000,000,000. What is a trillion dollars? Well, it’s a million million. It’s a thousand billion. And notice that those pallets are double-stacked. Imagine countries dealing in transactions where this much mula is floating around. The height of a stack of 1,000,000,000,000 (one trillion) one dollar bills measures 67,866 miles. This would reach more than one-fourth the way from the earth to the moon. The weight of all this money in hundred-dollar bills would weigh 22,000,000 pounds, or 125 blue whales made of money!

I feel poor…