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Elements ­ different types of atom
Elements are the simplest substances. There are about
100 different elements.
Each element is made up of very tiny particles called atoms,
and each element is made up of just one particular type of
atom, which is different to the atoms in any other element.
Gold is an element
made up of only
gold atoms.
Carbon is an element
made up of only
carbon atoms.
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Atoms ­ the building blocks
John Dalton had the first
ideas about the existence of
atoms over 200 years ago.
However, it is only relatively
recently that special
microscopes (called electron
microscopes) been invented
that can actually `see' atoms.
This image is highly magnified.
What could it be showing?
The yellow blobs are individual
gold atoms, as seen through
an electron microscope.
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How small is an atom?
Atoms are very small ­ they are about 0.00000001 cm wide.
Think about the thickness
of a crisp.
The number of atoms you
would need to stack up to
make the thickness of a
crisp, is approximately the
same number of crisps
you would need to stack
up to make the height of
Mount Everest!
That's roughly 7 million
crisps!
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What are atoms made of?
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