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Decimal Degrees to Degrees Minutes Seconds

Decimal Degrees to
Degrees Minutes Seconds
°
Answer:
DMS
42° 9' 6.768"
42 degrees, 9 minutes, 6.768 seconds

DMM
42° 9.1128'
42 degrees, 9.1128 minutes

Minutes
= 2529.1128 minutes
Seconds
= 151746.768 seconds

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Calculator Use

Convert degrees in decimal form such as GPS coordinates in latitude and longitude to degrees, minutes and seconds (DMS). Input decimal degrees (DD) and click Calculate to convert the decimal to degrees, minutes, seconds (DMS) and degrees, decimal minutes (DMM).

How to Convert Decimal Degrees to DMS

There are 60 minutes per degree, and 60 seconds per minute. So the conversion factor for each decimal is to multiply by 60.

  1. The whole number part of your decimal degrees gives you degrees
  2. The decimal part is decimal degrees which you want to convert to minutes. Multiply the decimal part by 60. The whole number part of the result is minutes.
  3. The decimal of this result is decimal minutes which you want to convert to seconds. Multiply the decimal part by 60 to get seconds.
  4. If there is still a decimal remaining you can round up or down to the whole number of seconds.

Example: Convert decimal degrees 156.742 to degrees minutes seconds

  1. The whole number is degrees. So 156.742 gives you 156 degrees.
  2. Multiply the remaining decimal by 60.
    0.742*60 = 44.52, so the whole number 44 equals minutes.
  3. Multiply the remaining decimal by 60.
    0.52*60 = 31.2, so the whole number 31 equals seconds.
  4. Decimal degrees 156.742 converts to 156 degrees, 44 minutes and 31 seconds, or 156° 44' 31".

Be sure to follow math rules of rounding when calculating seconds by hand. If your resulting seconds is something like 31.9 you may round up to 32.

Degrees minutes and seconds in a circle

Why multiply decimal degrees by 60 to get minutes and seconds?

Circles and spheres have 360 degrees in a complete rotation. One degree has 60 minutes and one minute has 60 seconds. If you have 91.456 degrees you can see that your measurement is 91 whole degress plus 0.456 of a degree.

To state the decimal 0.456 degrees in minutes multiply 0.456*60 to get 27.36 minutes. Now you have 27 whole minutes plus 0.36 of a minute.

To state the decimal 0.36 minutes in seconds multiply 0.36*60 to get 21.6 seconds. Since your decimal 0.6 is greater than 0.5 you can round up to 22 seconds if you like.

 

Last updated: August 14, 2023

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