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Vocabulary Unit B


materials scientist someone who studies the characteristics and uses of various materials, such as metals, ceramics, and plastics
materials engineer someone who uses the characteristics of existing materials to design new products
Trade-off An exchange of one thing in return for another. Giving up something that is a benefit or an advantage, in exchange for something that may be more desirable. Trade-offs always involve balancing benefits against risks.
atom The basic structural unit of matter; the smallest particle of an element that can enter into a reaction.
atomic mass The average mass of atoms of an element, it's also known as atomic weight.
element A collection of atoms of one type that cannot be decomposed into any simpler units except by spontaneously changing into other units by radioactive processes. Oxygen, hydrogen, iron, and carbon are example of elements.
family (of elements) A grouping of elements based on similar chemical properties. Families are generally arranged by columns in the periodic table.
metal Elements with following properties: high melting temperatures, high density, hard, high thermal conductivity and high electrical conductivity
Periodic Table of Elements An arrangement of the elements according to their atomic numbers so that elements with similar properties are in the same column. In 1869, Dmitri I. Mendeleev designed the first periodic table to show the similarities and differences of the elements.
Compound A combination of atoms of two or more different elements in a set ratio
Molecule Two or more atoms joined together chemically (can be the same element)
Chemical Formula A shorthand notation to describe elements and compounds and their reactions. Ex.  HCl + NaOH → H2O + NaCl
Non-metal Elements with following properties: low melting temperature, low density, soft, low thermal conductivity and low electrical conductivity
Semi-metal (metalloid) Elements with properties of both metals and non-metals
Noble Gases Gases in the family on the periodic table that rarely react with other elements
Atomic Number The number of protons in the nucleus of an atom
Isotope Elements with different number of neutrons
Electron Negatively charged particle that moves around the nucleus of an atom
Proton Positively charged particle in the nucleus of an atom
Neutron Particles in the nucleus of an atom with no charge
Mass Number The total number of protons and neutrons in the nucleus. The mass number is the atomic mass rounded to the nearest whole number
Chemical Bond The electrical attraction between two different atoms (elements) that forms a molecule (compound)
Created by: Sue Fredin