Objects become electrically charged by gaining or losing electrons, so that they have unequal numbers of protons and electrons. Gaining excess electrons causes a negative charge, while losing electrons causes a positive charge. A charged object behaves differently than an object with neutral charge, attracting objects with an opposite charge and repelling objects with a similar charge.Know More
There are many processes that cause an object to become electrically charged. Charge occurs in discreet units, with each positive or negative charge being equal to some multiple of the charge of individual protons or electrons. Individual charged particles are known as ions. These occur in table salt, for instance, which is a crystalline lattice of sodium and chloride ions, held together by their opposite charges. Despite being composed of charged particles, salt itself has little charge, since the positive and negative charges in it are nearly equal.
Mechanical processes, such as rubbing a balloon on hair, also cause electrical charges. Different elements have different electron affinities. When a substance with a greater electron affinity rubs against one with a lesser affinity, it steals some of the electrons, causing both to gain a charge.
Excess charge can be dangerous. Lightning, for instance, occurs due to a charge difference between the atmosphere and the ground. This difference in charge builds until it exceeds the electrical resistance of the air, and then a stream of electrons travels between the air and the ground, equalizing the charges.Learn more about Electricity
Static electricity is caused when objects or particles make contact and either gain or lose electrons due to friction, and the charged object discharges into a nearby object. Rubbing objects together increases the contact area. Examples of static electricity include touching a doorknob in cold weather and receiving a shock.Full Answer >
Electromagnetic energy is a form of energy that can be reflected or emitted from objects through electrical or magnetic waves traveling through space. Electromagnetic energy comes in many examples including gamma rays, X-rays, ultraviolet radiation, visible light, microwaves, radio waves and infrared radiation.Full Answer >
Potassium has one valence electron. Valence electrons are the electrons found in an atom's outer energy level.Full Answer >
The maximum number of electrons found on energy levels one through six are two, eight, 18, 32, 50 and 72. The formula for determining the number of electrons is two multiplied by n squared, or 2n^2.Full Answer >