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electron cloud

The area of space around the nucleus of an atom where the electrons travel.


The term used to describe an atom that does not have a charge.


The term used to describe a charged atom.

electron configuration

The position of different electrons around the nucleus of an atom.

electron dot diagram

The symbol of an element surrounded by dots representing valence electrons.

valence electrons

The electrons in the last (highest) energy level of an atom.

chemical bond

Force that holds two atoms together.

ionic bond

The type of bond that forms when one atom loses (and another atom gains) electrons.

covalent bond

The type of bond that forms when two atoms share electrons.


A pure substance containing two or more elements that are chemically bonded.

metallic bond

The type of bond that forms when metal atoms "pool" their electrons.


A neutral particle formed when two or more atoms are covalently bonded.

polar covalent bond

The type of bond formed when atoms share electrons unequally.

chemical formula

A combination of chemical symbols and numbers that shows which elements are present in a compound.

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