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- (chemistry) The smallest particle of an element that cannot be divided or broken up by chemical means. It consists of a central core of protons and neutrons, called the nucleus. Electrons revolve in orbits in the region surrounding the nucleus.
Source: U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
- A building block of matter; combination of protons, neutrons, and electrons, of which more than 110 kinds are now known.
Source: Leet, L. Don. 1982. Physical Geology, 6th Edition. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall
- According to the atomic theory, the smallest particle of an element that can exist either alone or in combination with similar particles of the same element or of a different element. The smallest particle of an element that enters into the composition of a molecule. Webster 3rd
Source: Dictionary of Mining, Mineral, and Related Terms