The structure of atom consists of three fundamental particles. These are— protons, electrons, and neutrons. Here, the positively charged ions – protons and no charged ions – neutrons reside in the nucleus.

There is an electron shell at the outer part of an atom. Electrons are negatively charged ions. Atoms usually have various properties which depend on the arrangement and number of basic particles.

What is Atom and How it Works

The smallest unit of any ordinary matter which can create a chemical element is known as an atom. From solid to liquid, gas, plasma — everything consists of neutral or ionized atoms. The Structure of Atom

The structure of the atom is very small, i.e. about 100 picometers. In the center (known as the nucleus) of the structure of the atom, protons and neutrons remain together. Whereas the electrons are very small in size.

These ions recede around the outside of the atom and mainly occupy the space around the nucleus. Now, we are going to depict the Structure of the Atom. Let’s check it out.

The Structure of Atom – Definition and its Mass Number

If it comes to elaborate on the structure of an atom of any element, then it indicates the constitution of a nucleus as well as the arrangement of electrons that whizz around the nucleus.

The Structure of Atom
The Structure of Atom

The Process of an atom contains protons and neutrons. Whereas the electrons remain at the surrounding part of these two ions. We determine the atomic number based on the total protons numbers that the nucleus has.

Those which are neutral atoms come with equal numbers of protons and electrons. However, for boosting stability, electrons can be lost or gained by the atoms. In this case, the resulting charged entity is known as an ion.

The structure of atoms depends on different elements. The reason is that different atoms consist of different numbers of protons and electrons. That’s why every element has its unique features.

Definition of the Atom

Atoms are the smallest matter unit that comes with every characteristic property of a chemical element. Depending on the Structure of the Atom, there are a few types of atoms. Let’s figure it out. The Structure of Atom

Definition of the Atom
Definition of the Atom

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Types of Atoms

Stable: Usually, the atoms are stable in nature due to the balance among the protons, neutrons, and electrons.

Isotopes: Atoms have chemical elements such as hydrogen, iron, or chlorine. Here, each element comes with cousins which are known as isotopes.

These consist of several numbers of neutrons but a similar number of protons and electrons. In case there exist excess neutrons (in the nucleus) of the structure of the atom that can create radioactive isotopes.

Radioactive: A few atoms are there which contain excess neutrons in the nucleus. As a result, they become unstable. These atoms give off particles continuously until their nature becomes stable.

Ions: If an atom has extra electrons or an electron from the structure of the atom is missing, then these are known as ions. These come with both positive or negative electric charges, due to which multiple reactions occur.

Antimatter: Every atomic particle comes with a twin anti-particle along with an opposite electric charge.  Antimatter hydrogen is formed in the laboratory. It consists of an antiproton and anti-electron. This type of atom is fragile and rare too.

What are Subatomic Particles

The subatomic particles are usually smaller compared to an atom. Electrons, Protons, and Neutrons are the main subatomic particles. The study of these particles is known as particle physics.

The Structure of an Atom consists of three main ions, now we are going to elaborate on those ions. Let’s check out.

What are Subatomic Particles
What are Subatomic Particles – The Structure of Atom

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Ernest Rutherford discovered the protons in 1919 while performing the gold foil experiment. In that experiment, he uses the alpha particles (helium nuclei) and projects them at gold foil.

During this experiment, the positive alpha particles get deflected. From this experiment, he got to know that protons reside in the nucleus and are positively charged. To determine any element of the periodic table, we use the atomic number.


These ions remain in the electron cloud. This is an area that remains at the surrounding part of the nucleus. These are the negatively charged ions.

Sir John Joseph Thompson discovered electrons in 1897. After doing multiple experiments, J.J. Thomson said that the cathode rays are negatively charged. These are called electrons.


It was James Chadwick who discovered neutrons in 1932. He said that penetrating radiation can incorporate the beams of neutral particles. In the nucleus, protons, as well as neutrons, are located. The Structure of Atom

The entire mass of the atom depends on these two. You can calculate the neutron number by subtracting the proton number from the atomic mass number. The stability of an atom and the isotope character depend on the neutrons in an element.

What is The Atomic Mass

The atomic mass can be determined by the mass of a single atom. It can be a single isotope at a time. Besides, the atomic mass is not an abundance-weighted average that you can see in relative atomic mass/atomic weight.

What is The Atomic Mass
What is The Atomic Mass

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Atomic Mass

Any element’s atomic mass refers to the average mass of the atoms. You can measure it in the atomic mass unit, i.e. AMU, known as daltons, D.

What is the size of an Atom?

Usually, the size of an atom is around 10-10 meters or 10-8 centimeters. It indicates when 100,000,000 atoms will be stretched, it can make one centimeter.

It is similar to the size of our fingernail. However, the size of the atoms and the Structure of Atom vary as per the elements. But the rough value of the atomic size is 10-10 m.

What is a Molecule?

A molecule is a group of two or more atoms. These can form very small identifiable units in which you can divide a pure substance. But it can retain both chemical properties and the composition of the substance. You can follow multiple methods to represent a molecule’s structure.



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