Today we broke down the structure of an atom by talking about the nucleus. We learned that protons in the nucleus repel each other because they are positively charged, and the neutrons keep them together.
Aim: How is the nucleus of an atom organized?
Answer: The nucleus is composed of protons and neutrons. The number of protons determines the atomic number and therefore the properties of the nucleus. Nuclei can have different numbers of neutrons. We call these atoms with the same atomic numbers and different numbers of neutrons isotopes.
Some periods also learned about natural abundance and average masses. Most atoms have multiple isotopes that exist in nature, and if we measure a population of these atoms, we will get some of the isotopes as well and that will change our mass reading for that element. If you didn’t get to it this week, don’t worry! We’ll talk about it on Monday.