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Topic 9 vocab

Physics Vocabulary

Atomic Spectrum Atoms with electrons in an excited state emit energy in the form of photons. Each element has a unique characteristic spectrum (pattern) due to its unique orbital arrangement of electrons.
Fission The splitting of the nucleus of an atom, occurring primarily as a result of the nucleus absorbing a neutron.
Excited State In the Bohr model of an atom, any orbit that an electron is allowed to move to that is higher than its lowest energy level.
Fusion (Nuclear) The process of combining two lighter nuclei to form a heavier nucleus.
Antiparticle A particle that has the same mass as another particle but has opposite values for its other properties including charge, baryon number and "strangeness."
Electronvolt (eV) The amount of energy required to move one elementary charge through a potential difference of one volt: 1eV = 1.6 × 10-19 J.
Photon A particle of electromagnetic radiation (light) carrying energy and momentum.
Bohr Model The Bohr model of the hydrogen atom consists of a positively charged nucleus and a single electron revolving in a circular orbit. Bohr assumed that an orbiting electron does not lose energy even though it has an acceleration toward the center.
Quarks Particles composing some nuclear particles (protons, neutrons, and hyperons), called baryons, as well as the intermediate mass mesons.
Quanta The discrete amounts of electromagnetic radiation that can be absorbed or, if excited, emitted by atoms.
Balmer Series Spectrum A series of lines in the visible portion of the hydrogen spectrum, caused by electrons in a higher energy state dropping to the n = 2 level.
Binding Energy The energy that must be supplied to the nucleus in order to separate it into its nucleons.
Lepton A type of subatomic particle, such as the electron, muon and neutrino, that are involved in electromagnetic or weak interactions; a basic elementary particle with no known internal structure and a small mass compared to a hadron.
Standard Model A representation of the basic composition of matter.
Wave-Particle Duality Particles such as electrons, protons and photons that also exhibit wave-like properties.
Subatomic Particle An elementary particle smaller than an atom.
Antimatter Matter that is made up entirely of antiparticles, such as antiprotons, antineutrons and antielectrons (positrons).
Atom The basic unit of molecular structure.
Einstein's Mass-Energy Equation The energy equivalent of an object is proportional to its mass and the square of the speed of light: E = mc2.
Universal Mass Unit A unit of mass in atomic physics given a value of 1/12 the mass of the carbon -12 nucleus.
Weak Force Weak nuclear interaction where leptons (electrons, muons, and neutrinos) are emitted.
Strong Force The force of attraction between two nucleons (proton or neutron) where mesons act as the carrier.
Energy Level Diagram A diagram used to show the various possible energy levels for the electrons in an atom of a particular element, from the ground state up through ionization when the electron is no longer associated with the atom.
Meson A family of subatomic particles, composed of a quark and antiquark, that are involved with strong interactions.
Positron The antiparticle of the electron, having the same mass but positive charge.
Atomic Mass Unit (u) A unit of mass defined as 1/12 of the mass of an atom of carbon-12, often abbreviated as amu or simply u.
Hydrogen Spectrum The characteristic wavelengths of the atom hydrogen emitted as a series of "fringes" or lines that has both visible and non-visible regions of the electromagnetic spectrum.
Mass Defect The amount of mass lost in the form of energy when a nucleus is assembled from the individual nucleons.
Created by: jwhitm5
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