Exponents in Excel

Updated on December 27, 2023
Article byWallstreetmojo Team
Edited byAshish Kumar Srivastav
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

Exponents in Excel Formula

Exponents in Excel are the same exponential function in Excel, such as in Mathematics, where a number is raised to a power or exponent of another number. We can use exponents through the two methods: the POWER function in the Excel worksheet takes two arguments, one as the number and another as the exponent, or we can use the exponent symbol from the keyboard.

Exponents in Excel

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How to Use Exponents in Excel Formula?

The following are the methods we can use exponents in the Excel formula.

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You can download this Exponents Excel Template here – Exponents Excel Template

Method #1 – Using the Power Function

Let us learn how to use the power function in excelPower Function In ExcelPOWER function calculates the power of a given number or base. To use this function you can use the keyword =POWER( in a cell and provide two arguments one as number and another as power.read more. It is one of the functions/formulas available in Excel.

The POWER formula should start with the “=” sign.

The formula of the POWER function is:

Exponents in Excel Examples
  • Number: It is the base number.
  • Power: It is the exponent.

Below are simple examples of using the POWER function.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1

The result is shown below.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-2

The first row has the base number of 6 and exponent as 3, which is 6 x6 x 6, and the result is 216, which can be derived using a POWER function in Excel.

We can use the formula’s base number and the exponents directly instead of the cell reference(as shown in the example below).

5 is multiplied twice in the first row, 5 x 5.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-3

The result is 25.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-4

We can use the POWER function to find out the number’s square root, cube root, or nth root. The exponents used to find the square root is (1/2), the cube root is (1/3), and the nth root is (1/n). The nth number means any given number. Below are a few examples.

In this table, the first row has the base number of 49, which is the square root of 7 (7 x 7) and 125 is the cube root of 5 (5 x5 x5), and 244 is the 6th root of 2.5 (2.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.5).

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-5

The results are given below.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-6

Below is the example of using the excel cell referenceExcel Cell ReferenceCell reference in excel is referring the other cells to a cell to use its values or properties. For instance, if we have data in cell A2 and want to use that in cell A1, use =A2 in cell A1, and this will copy the A2 value in A1.read more for square root in excelSquare Root In ExcelThe Square Root function is an arithmetic function built into Excel that is used to determine the square root of a given number. To use this function, type the term =SQRT and hit the tab key, which will bring up the SQRT function. Moreover, this function accepts a single argument.read more and cube root.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-7

The output column shows the results.

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-8

The first row in the above table finds the square root. Then, the second row is for the cube root. Finally, the third row is the nth root of the number.

Method #2 – Using Base Power

The POWER function can be applied using the “caret” symbol, the base number, and the exponent. It is a shorthand used for the POWER function.

We can find this caret symbol on the keyboard in the number 6 key (^). We must hold the “Shift” key and “6” to use this symbol. Then, apply the formula: “=Base ^ Exponent.”

As explained above in the previous examples of a POWER function, the caret formula can be applied to take the cell references or by inserting the base number and the exponent with a caret.

The below table shows the example of using cell references with (^).

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-9

The result is shown below:

Exponents in Excel Examples 1-10

Using the base number and exponent using (^) is shown in the below table.

Exponents in Excel Examples 2-1

The result is shown below:

Exponents in Excel Examples 2-2

We can use the caret operator to find out the square root, cube root, and nth root of the number where the exponents are (1/2), (1/3), and (1/n) [as shown in the below tables].

Table 1:

Exponents in Excel Examples 2-3

Now, the result is shown below:

Exponents in Excel Examples 2-4

Table 2:

Exponents in Excel Examples 2-5

Now, the result is shown below:

Exponents in Excel Examples 2-6

Method #3 – Using the EXP Function

Another way of calculating the exponent is by using the EXP function, one of the functions of Excel.

The syntax of the formula is.


The number is “e,” the base number, and the exponent is the given number. So, it is “e” to the power of a given number. Here, “e” is the constant value, which is 2.718. So, the value of “e” will be multiplied by the times of the exponent (given number).

Examples 3

We can see that the number given in the formula is 5, which means the value of “e,” 2.718, is multiplied 5 times, and the result is 148.413.

Method #4 – Using theText-Based Exponents

We need to use text-based exponents to write or express the exponents. To do this,

  1. We must first select the cells where we want to input the exponent’s value. Then, Change the format of the selected cells to Text.

    We can do it either by selecting the cells and choosing the Text option from the dropdown list in the Home tab under the Number section or right-clicking on the selected cells and selecting the Format Cells option to select the Text option under Number tab.

    Exponents in Excel Examples 4

  2. Now, we must enter both the base number and exponent in the cell next to next without any space.

    We must select the exponent number only (as shown below).
    Exponents in Excel Examples 4-2

  3. Then, right-click on the cell and select the Format Cells option.

    Exponents in Excel Examples 4-1

  4. In the pop-up window, check the box for Superscript in excel under the Effects category. Then, press the OK button.

    (In Excel, we have an option called Superscript or Subscript to show the mathematical values or formulas).

    Exponents in Excel Examples 4-3

  5. Click the Enter key. We can see the result below.

    Exponents in Excel Examples 4-4

    All these are examples of how exponents can be expressed in Excel. We can also use this text-based mode of showing the exponents for other mathematical formulas or values.

  6. Below are the ways we can use the exponents in the Excel formula.

    Exponents in Excel Examples 4-5

Things to Remember

This article has been a guide to Exponents in Excel. Here, we discuss using the exponents in Excel formula using caret, EXP, and POWER functions, practical examples, and a downloadable Excel template. You may learn more about Excel from the following articles: –

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