# What is Pennium?

## What is Pennium?

In this investigation, you are going to use pennies with different masses to represent different isotopes of an imaginary element called pennium, or Pe. Remember that chemical isotopes are atoms that have the same number of protons, but different numbers of neutrons.

## How do you determine isotopes?

Subtract the atomic number (the number of protons) from the rounded atomic weight. This gives you the number of neutrons in the most common isotope. Use the interactive periodic table at The Berkeley Laboratory Isotopes Project to find what other isotopes of that element exist.

## How do you calculate percent abundance?

To calculate the percent abundance of each isotope in a sample of an element, chemists usually divide the number of atoms of a particular isotope by the total number of atoms of all isotopes of that element and then multiply the result by 100.

## Why are pennies a good model for isotopes?

The analogy is a good one because the two types of pennies we worked with were slightly different in mass, but they were still pennies, similar to how elements can have different masses or vary slightly in composition but the isotope is still an element.

## Are pennies isotopes?

Before 1982, pennies were made of 95% copper and 5% tin. Now they are made of zinc, coated with a thin layer of copper. Because they have different masses, we can call them isotopes of pennies.

## How do we find atomic mass?

Subtract the atomic number (the number of protons) from the rounded atomic weight. This gives you the number of neutrons in the most common isotope. Use the interactive periodic table at The Berkeley Laboratory Isotopes Project to find what other isotopes of that element exist.

## What measurable property distinguishes a pre 82 penny from a post 82 penny?

For any given isotope, the sum of the numbers of protons and neutrons in the nucleus is called the mass number. This is because each proton and each neutron weigh one atomic mass unit (amu). By adding together the number of protons and neutrons and multiplying by 1 amu, you can calculate the mass of the atom.