Atomic Structure: How to find it in an element?

Atomic Structure
Atomic Structure

We all have studied the atom and the atomic structure in our academics. The atomic structure of an element is all about the composition of its nucleus as well as the array of its electrons around the nucleus.  This mainly constitutes of electron, proton, and neutron. It has been rightly said that the foundation of chemistry is an atom. Since all the living as well non-living material is made up of atom; this is why it is important to know about its structure. Atom is a tiny portion of the element that participates in the chemical reaction. Atoms are made up of elements called electron, proton, and neutron. The organized way of elements of an atom is called the atomic structure of an element.

An atom consists of a nucleus and a series of orbitals. The nucleus is situated in the centre of the atom and orbitals are surrounding them. Further, the atom of an element is made up of three different types of sub-atomic particles namely electron, proton and neutrons. The nucleus of the atom consists of protons which are positively charged and neutral neutrons. Electrons which are negatively charged elements of an atom revolve around the nucleus in many separate paths which are called orbitals.

In simple words, it can be said that the atomic structure of an element consists of positively charged protons and neutral neutrons in the nucleus and negatively charged electrons surrounding the nucleus. The atomic structure of various elements varies from each other because of the diverse types of elements present in it. Now our experts from Assignment Help Canada will tell you about the Atomic Structure.

Elements of Atomic Structure
Elements of Atomic Structure

Elements of Atomic Structure:


It is the central part of an atom which constitutes of two sub-particles namely proton and neutron.  It is held together by the “strong force”. The elements of the nucleus are combined together to form the overall atomic structure. Discussions on these sub-particles will be made in this article with an acute difference among them.

The Protons

The protons of an atom are found inside the nucleus of the atom which is in the centre. The protons are positively charged particles. They have a mass of one atomic unit or it can also be known as one dalton. Rutherford discovered proton. It is the element having a positive charge and indicated by “P’. It is having a fixed charge of 1.6*10-^-19 Columbus and the relative mass of this element is 1.6*10^-24 g. In the nucleus of every atom, one or more protons are present there. This is one of the necessary elements of the nucleus to present an atomic structure. The number of this element presented in the nucleus of an atom is considered as the significant property of each element.

The total number of protons presented in the atom is called the atomic number of that element and represented by “z”. Every element has different numbers of protons and this is why every element has its different atomic number. For example, Hydrogen has only one proton, carbon has a total number of six protons, and oxygen has eight protons. The presented number of protons in an element decides what kind of element is. The numbers of these particles are also used to determine the chemical nature of the elements.

The Electron

The electron was discovered by J.J Thompson who was a British physicist. An electron is indicated by “e” and a negatively charged element of an atom. Electrons are found to be orbiting the nucleus.  The fixed charge of this element is a negative charge having 1.6 *10^-19 Columbus as well as a comparative mass of it that is very small and calculated as 0 is 1/1836. Electrons spin surround the nucleus of an atom in orbital paths. These are smaller than neutron as well as a proton. These particles are more than 1800 times tiny compared to either a neutron or proton. The nature of electron is used by the physicist to determine the properties of an atom such as boiling point, stability, and conductivity. The electrons in an atom are arranged in a very significant way.

The electrons are found in the electron shells outside the nucleus. The electrons are negatively charged particles of an atom. The atomic structure of an element also takes into account the mass of the atom as well as the charge of the atom. The arrangement of electrons in an atom referred to the orbital definition of the location of these electrons in an atom.  They are arranged depending on the potential energy in various orbits. The inner orbitals revolving the nucleus are spherical whereas the outer orbitals have a much-complicated configuration. The energy level is represented by 1,2,3,4… and the orbits are by K, L, M, N AND so on. They can change their orbits. The electrons are attracted to protons. The number of electrons in an atom is always equal to the number of protons presented in that element. The numbers of the electron in an atom can change and determine the ion of the atom. 

The Neutron

The Neutron was discovered by James Chadwick. The neutrons are also found in the nucleus of the atom. In fact, its particles have an atomic mass of one unit which is also known as one dalton. Neutrons are neither positively charged nor are they negatively charged. These are neutral. It is represented by the “n” and has no charge. This element of the atomic structure is neutral having no charged. The relative mass of this element of an atom is the same as of a proton which is 1.6*10^-24. This element is available in the nucleus of an atom. The whole number of neutrons in an atom is called the neutron number.  The mass of the neutron is a little larger compared to a proton. The chemical, as well as the nuclear properties of an element, are examined by both the number of protons and the number of neutrons presented in the nucleus. This is a significant element necessary for the stability of nuclei.

Neutrons present in an atom can change its relative mass because the weights of the neutrons are equal to the weight of the proton along with electron together. The total number of the neutrons together with the protons is considered as an atomic mass number. The number of neutrons available in the nucleus of the atom can be different from that of others which differentiates the isotopes of an element to others.  Now our experts from Online Assignment Help will tell you about the Atomic Mass.

Atomic Mass

The mass of an atom is determined by the total mass of the neutrons and protons in the atom. This is because the neutrons and protons in the atom have a mass of one atomic unit, also known as one dalton. Mathematically speaking, the mass of a neutron or a proton is around 1.67X10^-24 grams. On the other hand, the mass of an electron is ignored while calculating the mass of an atom. This is because the mass of an electron is around 1/8000th of one atomic mass unit. Its mass is much insignificant in terms of protons and neutrons and it only weighs around 9.11×10^-28 grams. Hence, the greatest contribution while determining the mass of an atom is that of a neutron while the least contribution while determining the total mass of an atom is that of an electron.

Atomic Charge

The atomic structure of an element also includes the atomic charge. Electrons have really high contributions towards the charge of an atom. This is because the electrons are positively charged equal to the negative charge of the protons. The charge of the electrons is shown as -1 whereas the charge of the electrons is shown as +1. Neutrons have no charge and consequently, they make no contributions towards the charge of the atom. Studies hold that, in an atom which is ought to be neutrally charged, the number of protons will be equal to the number of neutrons. Hence, the positive, as well as the negative charges, will cancel out each other.

Volume of Atoms

If the total size of protons, electrons and neutrons are taken into account, it would be evident that almost the entire volume of the atom is empty. Despite that, solid objects are impenetrable. This can be attributed to the fact that the electrons present in the atom are negatively charged and hence they cause repulsion to one another. This is what keeps the atoms from occupying the same place.  The mass number of an atom, as well as the atomic number of an atom, also determines the atomic structure.

Atomic Number

The numbers of protons that are present determine the atomic number of an element. It is the number of protons or the atomic number is what distinguishes one element from the other. However, the number of neutrons and electrons are variables. The neutrons can vary in number and consequently they produce isotopes. The electrons of an element can also vary in number in the atoms and they end up producing ions. The example of carbon can be taken which has an atomic number of 6 and that is because the number of protons present is 6.

Mass Number

The mass number of an atom is determined by the sum total of the number of protons with the sum total of the number of neutrons. As mentioned earlier, the protons and neutrons of an atom have a similar mass and due to the negligible mass that electrons possess that cannot be taken into consideration. However, it is worth mentioning that the isotopes of an element will have the same atomic number but they will have varying mass numbers.

For determining or calculating the mass of an atom, the arithmetic mean of the mass numbers of the isotopes of the element which occur naturally is calculated. To cite an example, the mass of an atom of the element chlorine if found out to be 35.45 atomic mass unit and this is because chlorine has a number of naturally occurring isotopes most of whose atomic mass is either 35 amu with a combination of 17 protons and 18 neutrons or an atomic mass of 37 amu with a combination of 17 protons and 20 neutrons.

The atomic structure of any element also comprises of Isotopes. Isotopes are defined as the atoms of the same element but they vary in the number of neutrons however they have the same number of protons. Even though the isotopes have a different number of neutrons, they do not have significant differences in their physical properties. Isotopes, however, have largely differentiated stabilities. The isotopes which are unstable generally emit electrons as well as alpha rays. In addition, protons, neutrons and positrons are also subject to be emitted with the electrons being subjected to capture to form a relatively stable configuration of atoms and it is done through a process of radioactive decay. The atoms which are newly created are high in energy, cause the emission of gamma rays and are called radioisotopes. Now our assignment experts will tell you about different elements of Atomic Structure.

The net charge of an atom

There is no net charge of the atom. Electrons are negatively charged particles though protons are positively charged particles. The positive charge equivalent to the proton and the negative charge of the electron can drop one another. In this way, the atom does not have any net charge. In an atom that is unbiased, the number of electrons revolving around the core and the number of protons inside the core.

There were two critical disadvantages in the planetary model of the atom. The first is that unlike planets that rotate around a Sun, electrons are charged particles. In the traditional electromagnetism, as indicated by the Larmor formula, electric charge is known to discharge electromagnetic waves.

The circling charge must be continually lost on the nucleus to the energy and the spiral, with it must collide in the little piece of one another. The other issue was that the models of planets couldn’t clarify the exceptionally high emissions and spectra of atoms. For more information, you can also check instant assignment help.

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