Picoliter (pL): The Smallest Metric Unit for Nano-Volume Measurements

Introduction to Picoliter (pL)

The picoliter, represented as "pL," is the smallest metric unit of volume used for measuring nano-scale quantities of liquids. It is one trillionth of a liter (1 L), making it indispensable in scientific fields that require precise measurements at the atomic and molecular levels. The picoliter is a key unit in nanotechnology, biophysics, and advanced research.

Definition and Usage

A picoliter is defined as 1/1,000,000,000,000th (one-trillionth) of a liter. It is equivalent to 0.001 nanoliters (nL) or 1,000 femtoliters (fL). Picoliters are primarily used in cutting-edge research areas like microfluidics, single-cell analysis, and nanomaterial synthesis. Their incredibly small size allows for precision at the molecular and subatomic levels, driving innovation in multiple scientific disciplines.

Applications of Picoliter

Picoliters are crucial in various scientific domains:

  • Nanotechnology: Picoliters enable the manipulation and assembly of nanoparticles and nanomaterials for advanced materials science.
  • Microfluidics: Microfluidic devices use picoliters to control and analyze minute volumes of fluids for applications in biology and chemistry.
  • Biophysics: Single-molecule studies and biophysical research rely on picoliters to investigate individual biomolecules.
  • Chemical Synthesis: In chemical laboratories, picoliters are used for precise dosing of reagents in nanomaterial synthesis.

Conversions and Equivalents

Understanding picoliter conversions is essential for advanced scientific work:

  • 1 Picoliter (pL) = 0.001 Nanoliters (nL)
  • 1 Picoliter (pL) = 1,000 Femtoliters (fL)
  • 1 Picoliter (pL) ≈ 0.0000000610237 Cubic Millimeters (mm³)
  • 1 Picoliter (pL) ≈ 0.0000000000000353147 Cubic Feet (ft³)


The picoliter (pL) is an extraordinary metric unit that empowers scientists to work at the nanoscale with unmatched precision. Whether in nanotechnology research, biophysics experiments, or advanced chemistry, picoliters open up new frontiers in understanding and manipulating the tiniest volumes, driving innovation and discovery.

Keywords: Picoliter, pL, metric volume unit, nanotechnology, microfluidics, biophysics