The Tiny Electron

In an atom there are protons, neutrons and electrons. The neutrons and protons are bound together at the center while the electrons orbit them in theoretical positions which, for quantum physics sake, is a bit too detailed too explain here. What most people are likely unaware of is the size of these subatomic particles. The proton (1.67×10-27 kg) and neutron (1.67×10-27 kg) are about the same sizes but the electron is much smaller at 9.10×10-31 kg.

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This makes electrons about 1/1836th the size of a proton, unbelievably small in comparison. To put this into perspective, an adult weighing 185 lbs. (83.9 kg) would be the proton while a tiny amount of sugar weighing 0.1 lbs. (45 g) would be the electron. 0.1 lbs. would be close to the weight of 2 AA batteries or 8 U.S. quarters. To put this another way, 1,836 electrons would be the same size of 1 proton if they were combined together.


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