As of 2014, there are 15 isotopes of carbon. They are C-8 through C-22. Only C-12 and C-13 are stable, while the other isotopes are radioactive, and of these, only C-14 is found in nature.Know More
C-14 is famous for its use in carbon dating and has a half-life of 5,700 years. This means after 5,700 years, half of the carbon will have decayed into nitrogen-14.
C-11 is the most stable of the man-made isotopes, with a half-life of a little over 20 minutes. The other radioisotopes have half-lives that last for seconds or fractions of seconds. C-13 is used in research and medicine, and C-12 is used to establish the atomic weight of other isotopes.Learn more about Atoms & Molecules
A carbon atom typically possesses six electrons – two in its inner shell and four in its outer shell. This number varies due to a number of circumstances, but a stand-alone atom with no charge contains six electrons.Full Answer >
Most carbon atoms have six neutrons. Although carbon is defined as having six protons, the number of neutrons in a carbon nucleus can vary, which gives rise to the various isotopes of carbon. Fifteen isotopes of carbon, ranging from two to 16 neutrons, have been observed by scientists.Full Answer >
In its ground, or lowest-energy, state, carbon has two unpaired electrons. However, there are four total outer, or valence, electrons, meaning carbon atoms have four possible bonding sites.Full Answer >
One neutral atom of carbon has four valence electrons. An easy way to tell how many valence electrons an element has is to look at the periodic table and find the element's main group number. Carbon is in group 4, which means it has four valence electrons.Full Answer >