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Atomic structure

Atomic structure

Author: Peter Anderson

- To understand the basic structure of the atom.

- To distinguish between protons, neutrons, and electrons according to their size, mass, speed, and location

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Fly through an atom

If you've never flown through one before. . .

The Diagram

A simple, often reproduced picture with what you need to know.

Protons and neutrons in the center, unmoving.  Electrons in orbit around the nucleus at about 1/10th speed of light.

Positive protons, neutral neutrons, negative electrons.

Big protons and neutrons, little electrons.

Important fact: The nucleus is very small

The protons and neutrons occupy a small area. This zoom shows you how small it really is by comparing it to a marble on a baseball diamond. The outfield wall is the first electron path.

Important fact: The nucleus is very heavy

Although the nucleus is small, it is where most of the mass of the atom lies. 

Much as the sun contains most of the mass (97%) of the solar systerm. 

How they all work together

Disregard the section on quark color and gluon exchange. It is beyond the scope of most school education. It is interesting

Atom song

Catchy, has the facts

The Atoms Family

Perhaps playful, but a solid description of the characters