An atom is the smallest unchangeable component of a chemical element. Unchangeable means in this case by chemical means; i.e., by reactions with acids or bases or the effect of moderate temperatures, atoms may only be slightly changed, namely, in their degree of ionisation. Moderate temperatures refers here to temperatures whose equivalent energy kT (k is Boltzmann’s constant, T the temperature in K) is not larger than a few electron volts (eV) (see Table 8.1).
KeywordsMercury Attenuation Argon Helium Sedimentation
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