Definition of electron in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /əˈlekˌträn/


A stable subatomic particle with a charge of negative electricity, found in all atoms and acting as the primary carrier of electricity in solids.

The electron’s mass is about 9 × 1028g, 1,836 times less than that of the proton. Electrons orbit the positively charged nuclei of atoms and are responsible for binding atoms together in molecules and for the electrical, thermal, optical, and magnetic properties of solids. Electric currents in metals and in semiconductors consist of a flow of electrons, and light, radio waves, X-rays, and much heat radiation are all produced by accelerating and decelerating electrons.

Example sentences
  • The antiparticle of the electron is the positron; there are also antiquarks and antineutrinos.
  • Most beta decays involve the emission of electrons from the nucleus as a neutron decays into an electron and a proton.
  • It was like looking at the evenly spaced energy levels of electrons in an atom.


Late 19th century: from electric + -on.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: e·lec·tron

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.