1Chapter 40In this chapter we continue with a primary goal of physics―discovering and understanding the properties of atoms. 100 years ago researchers struggled to find experiments that would prove the existence of atoms. Today, thanks to scientific and technological progress, we can manipulate atoms in amazing ways: we can image individual atoms using scanning tunneling microscopy; we can drag them on surfaces to make quantum corrals, and even hold an individual atom indefinitely in a trap in order to study its properties when isolated. All About Atoms40-
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2Basic PropertiesAtoms are stable.Essentially all atoms have remained unchanged for billions of years.Some Properties of Atoms40-Atoms combine with each other.Atoms stick together to form molecules and stack up to form rigid solids. Even though atoms are mostly empty space, their interactions allow you to stand on a floor without falling through!These basic properties can be explained by quantum mechanics.