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Matter & Interactions
Found in: Page 38

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Short Answer

Question: In the periodic table on the inside front cover of this book (or one you find on the internet), for each element there is given the "atomic number," the number of protons or electrons in an atom, and the "atomic mass," which is essentially the number of nucleons, protons plus neutrons, in the nucleus, averaged over the various isotopes of the element, which differ in the number of neutrons. Make a graph of the number of neutrons vs. the number of protons in the elements. You needn't graph every element, just enough to see the trend. What do you observe about the data? (This reflects the need for more neutrons in proton-rich nuclei in order to prevent the electric repulsion of the protons of each other from destroying the nucleus.)


It is evident from the graph that number of neutrons increase as the number of protons increase.

See the step by step solution

Step by Step Solution

Step 1: Concept of atomic mass

With each element, the atomic number rises. The mass of an atom is equal to the sum of its protons and neutrons. As the atomic number grows, the atomic mass increases as well. However, the number of neutrons does not always rise in lockstep with the increase in the number of protons.

Step 2: Drawing the required Graph

Draw a graph between number of neutrons and number of protons.

Step 3: Observation from the graph

From the graph, it is clearly visible that as the number of protons increases, number of neutrons also increase along with them. It happens in order to increase the nuclear force so that it can overcome the repulsive electrostatic field caused by protons.

Thus, graph has been drawn and observations have been noted from it.


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