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Fall Semester 2007/ 2008
Dr. Ned Xoubi
Chapter 3:
Atomic Structure
The Building Blocks of Matter
Founder of the Nuclear Engineering Department
Nuclear Engineering Department
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Structure of Matter
All matter is made of tiny indivisible particles called atoms
Atom is the smallest amount of matter that retains the
properties of an element
An atom cannot be broken down further without changing
the chemical and physical nature of the substance.
Atoms of any one element are different from those of any
other element.
Chemical reactions occur when atoms are separated,
joined, or rearranged; however, atoms of one element are
not changed into atoms of another by a chemical reaction

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Bohr Model of the Atom
Electrons are traveling in discrete orbits at fixed
distances from the nucleus
A single quantum of radiant energy called a
photon is emitted or absorbed when an electron
moves from one orbit / shell to another.
The photon energy is equal to the energy
difference between the two states in each shell.
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Atomic Nucleus
The atomic nucleus is the dense positively charged
center of the atom, surrounded by a number of
negatively charged particles called electrons.
The nucleus is made up of two types of primary
particles
Protons
Neutrons.
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Primary Subatomic Particles
1.67492 x 10
-24
non nucleus Neutron
1.67261 x 10
-24
1.60219 x 10
-19
nucleus Proton
9.10956 x 10
-28
1.60219 x 10
-19
Orbits around the
nucleus
Electron
Rest Mass (g) Charge (C) Location Particle
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Atomic and Mass Number
The total number of protons in the nucleus of an
atom is called the atomic number of the atom and is
given the symbol Z.
The mass number of the nucleus is the total number
of nucleons, that is, the number of protons and
neutrons in the nucleus.
A = Z + N
A
Z
X
A
Z
A
Z
X
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Isotopes
Nuclides that have the same number of protons
(atomic number), but differ in the number of
neutrons, and thus different mass number
Majority of elements have a few stable isotopes and
several unstable isotopes, both are found in nature.
Some isotopes are more abundant than others
Oxygen has three stable isotopes (
16
O,
17
O,
18
O) and
eight unstable or radioactive isotopes
Hydrogen has three isotopes (
1
H,
2
H,
3
H)
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Atomic and Nuclear Radii
The atom does not have a distinct outer edge, due
to the fact that the electron cloud, formed by the
electrons moving in their various orbits
The nucleus is similar to the atom, and does not
have a sharp outer boundary
The nucleus is shaped like a sphere with a radius
that depends on the number of protons and
neutrons
r = (1.25 x 10
-13
cm) A
1/3
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Mass Defect
The mass of an atom is slightly less than the sum of
the masses of the individual particles that make up
that atom.
This difference in mass between the mass of the atom
and the sum of the masses of its parts is called the
mass defect.
The mass defect of a nucleus of proton number Z and
neutron number N is defined by
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Binding Energy
Binding energy is the amount of energy that must be
supplied to a nucleus to completely separate its
nuclear particles (nucleons).
This is the energy that is binding the neutrons and
protons in the nucleus, and it is equivalent to the
mass defect.
The binding energy can be calculated using the mass-
energy relationship E = mc2
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Binding Energy
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Example
How many molecules of Heavy water are in a two liter water bottle?
2
H .015 a/0 - The fraction of Hydrogen that is
2
H 1.5 x10
-4
The molecular weight of H
2
O is 18.0153
The water molecular density is = (0.6022 x10
24
) / 18.0153
= 0.03343 X 10
+24
Molecules/ cm
3
The total number of Heavy water Molecules in the water bottle is
1.5 x10
-4
X 0.03343 X 10
+24
X 2000 = 1 X 10
+20
Molecules

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