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Definition

elementary charge

An elementary charge is the electrical charge carried by a single electron . This is equivalent, but opposite in polarity , to the electrical charge carried by a proton . By convention, electrons have negative (minus) charge, and protons have positive (plus) charge.

The unit of electrical charge quantity in the International System of Units is the coulomb . One coulomb (1 C) is equal to approximately 6.24 x 10 18 elementary charges. Thus, an elementary charge is approximately 1.60 x 10 -19 C.

Also see Table of Physical Units and Constants.

This was last updated in September 2005
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