What is an electron?
A: The electron is a subatomic particle (denoted by the symbol e− or β−) whose electric charge is negative one elementary charge.
Electrons belong to the first generation of what
A: The lepton family.
They are generally thought to be elementary particles
because they have what?
A: No known components or substructure.
How much is the electron's mass?
A: Approximately 1/1836th that of the proton.
Quantum mechanical properties of the electron include
A: An intrinsic angular momentum (spin) of a half-integer value, expressed in units of the reduced Planck constant, ħ.
Being fermions, no two electrons can occupy the same
quantum state, in accordance with what?
A: The Pauli exclusion principle.
Like all elementary particles, electrons exhibit
properties of both particles and what?
A: Waves: They can collide with other particles and can be diffracted like light.
Why are the wave properties of electrons easier to
observe with experiments than those of other particles like
A: Because electrons have a lower mass and hence a longer de Broglie wavelength for a given energy.
Electrons play an essential role in numerous physical phenomena, such as what?
A: Electricity, magnetism, chemistry and thermal conductivity, and they also participate in gravitational, electromagnetic and weak interactions.
Since an electron has charge, it has a surrounding
A: Electric field.
If an electron is moving relative to an observer, said
observer will observe it to generate what?
A: A magnetic field.
Electromagnetic fields produced from other sources will
affect the motion of an electron according to what?
A: The Lorentz force law.
Electrons radiate or absorb energy in the form of what
when they are accelerated?
Laboratory instruments are capable of trapping what?
A: Individual electrons as well as electron plasma by the use of electromagnetic fields.
Special telescopes can detect what?
A: Electron plasma in outer space.
Interactions involving electrons with other subatomic
particles are of interest in fields such as what?
A: Chemistry and nuclear physics.
The exchange or sharing of the electrons between two or
more atoms is the main cause of what?
A: Chemical bonding.
In 1838, British natural philosopher Richard Laming
first hypothesized the concept of what?
A: An indivisible quantity of electric charge to explain the chemical properties of atoms.
In 1891 Irish physicist George Johnstone Stoney named
this charge what?
J. J. Thomson and his team of British physicists
identified it as a particle in 1897 during what?
A: The cathode-ray tube experiment.
Electrons can also participate in nuclear reactions,
such as what?
A: Nucleosynthesis in stars, where they are known as beta particles.
Electrons can be created through beta decay of what?
A: Radioactive isotopes and in high-energy collisions, for instance when cosmic rays enter the atmosphere.
The antiparticle of the electron is called what?
A: The positron; it is identical to the electron except that it carries electrical charge of the opposite sign.
When an electron collides with a positron, both
particles can be what?
A: Annihilated, producing gamma ray photons.