I’ve been adding to my series of layperson’s articles on The Structure of Matter, which eventually will serve as an introduction to particle physics for those coming to this site for the first time. You might recall that in early December I supplemented my older article on molecules with an article on atoms. I got some terrific reader feedback, in the form of incisive constructive criticism, which allowed me to greatly improve the latter article. Well, readers, you’ve got another chance to help me out if you would like to — or you can just enjoy the read. I have three new articles (two of them short) which were put up over the last few weeks. These are:
- Atoms: Their Inner Workings — how electric forces hold them together and quantum mechanics holds them up.
- Isotopes: Variations on an Atom — what are different isotopes of a given atomic element, and in what senses are they similar and different?
- Atoms of an Isotope Are Identical, Literally — any two atoms of the same isotope (in their ground state) are exactly identical, a fact which has great importance for biology.
Incidentally, the next stage in this series will be to describe electrons, and then I will turn to atomic nuclei, to the neutrons and protons that they contain, and eventually to the quarks and gluons that make up the neutrons and protons.