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A centimetre (American spelling: centimeter, symbol cm) is a unit of length in the metric system, equal to one hundredth of a metre, which is the current SI base unit of length. Centi is the SI prefix for a factor of 10^{−2}.^{[1]} Hence a centimetre can be written as 10×10^{−3} m (engineering notation) or 1E−2 m (scientific E notation) — meaning 10 mm or 1 m/100 respectively. The centimetre is the base unit of length in the now deprecated centimetregramsecond (CGS) system of units.
Though for many physical quantities, SI prefixes for factors of 10^{3}—like milli and kilo—are often preferred by technicians, the centimetre remains a practical unit of length for many everyday measurements. A centimetre is approximately the width of the fingernail of an adult person (between 3/8 in and 7/16 inch on an English inch ruler).
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Equivalence to other units of length
1 centimetre is equal to:
 0.01 metre, which can be represented by 1.00 E2 m (1 metre is equal to 100 centimetres)
 about 0.393700787401575 inch (1 inch is equal to 2.54 centimetres) ^{[2]}
1 cubic centimetre is equal to 1 millilitre, under the current SI system of units.
Uses of centimetre
In addition to its use in the measurement of length, the centimetre is used:
 sometimes, to report the level of rainfall as measured by a rain gauge ^{[3]}
 in the CGS system, the centimetre is used to measure capacitance, where 1 cm of capacitance = 1.113×10 ^{− 12} Farad ^{[4]}
 in maps, centimetres are used to make conversions from map scale to real world scale (kilometres)
 to represent second moment of areas (cm^4)
Unicode symbols
For the purposes of compatibility with Chinese, Japanese and Korean (CJK) characters, Unicode has symbols for: ^{[5]}
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