Value of Electron

What is the Value of Electron?

An electron is a subatomic (smaller than an atom) light particle that carries a single unit of negative electricity, represented as - e. Electrons can either be free (meaning not attached to the atom) or bounded with the nucleus. The charge of the electron is equal to the magnitude of the elementary charge (e) however, holding a negative sign (-e), the value of the basic unit of charge or elementary charge is 1.6 x 10 ^ - 19 C. Therefore, 


Value of electron charge (- e) =  -1.6 x 10 ^ - 19 Coulomb

It is one of the important constants of nature.

 Electron Charge

The charge on a single electron (e) is regarded as the unit electrical charge. It is designated as a negative polarity. The charge on an electron is equal, however, opposite to the positive charge on a proton or hole.

Mass of Electron

Electrons have a mass of 0 amu (atomic mass unit) when they orbit the nucleus and have a charge of -1. 

The invariant mass of the electron is given by,


m (-e)  =  9.1 x 10 ^ - 31 kg

Which is a very small value.

Here, the invariant mass is the rest mass mass or the mass of a stationary electron.

In atomic mass units (amu), the mass of an electron is given by,

5.489×10 ^ - 4 amu

Charge of Electron in eV

In physics, eV stands for electron volt and it is the amount of kinetic energy gained by an electron while accelerating from rest  position through an electric potential difference of one volt in vacuum.

Electron volt is the unit of energy generally used in atomic and nuclear physics which is equal to the energy gained by an electron  or a charged particle carrying unit electronic charge when the electrical potential at the electron increases by 1 Volt. 

1 Electron volt (eV) =  1.6 x 10 ^ - 12 erg

Where value of 1 erg = 10 ^ - 7 Joule


The electron volt =  1.6 x 10 ^ - 19 Joule

Mass of Electron in ev

Mass of an electron in eV or electron volt is this mass corresponding to a rest energy given by,


mev =  0.511 MeV


Value of Charge

The quantization of electric charge is the property by virtue of which all free charges are an integral part of a basic unit of charge represented by e. Therefore, the charge q of a body is given by,


q  = ne 

Where n is any integer, positive or negative. The fundamental charge is the charge that an electron or proton carries,  by convention, the charge on an electron is negative. Therefore, charge on an electron is written as (e ^ - 1) while the charge on proton is (+e).

The value of the basic unit of elementary charge is given by,


e = 1.6  x  10 ^  - 19 coulomb or C

This is one of the fundamental constants used in physics.

If a body carries n1 electrons and n2 protons,then total charge on the body will be:


  q  =  n1(-e) + n2 (e) = (n2 - n1) e

As n1, n2 are integers so their difference must also be an integer. Hence the charge on any body is an integral multiple of e. 

q  = + / - n x 1.6 x 10 ^ - 19 C


The SI unit of charge is coulomb or C.

The CGS (centimeter-gram-second) unit of charge is 1 electrostatic (e.s.u) of charge or stat charge.

Another unit of charge is one electromagnetic unit (e.m.u) of charge, where 


1 e.m.u. of charge = 3 x 10 ^ 8 e.s.u of charge = 10 Coulomb

Charge of One Electron

Any charged body or charged particle can possess charge equal to +/- e , +/- 2e, +/- 3e, +/- 4e and so on, i.e., the possible value of charge for one electron will be given by.

Taking the equation: q  = ne (putting n = 1), we get,


  q  = - 1 e = - 1.6 x 10 ^ - 19 Coulomb

Difference Between Charge and Electron




Electric charge on a body can either be positive, negative or zero. They represent either deficiency or excess of electrons on them.

Electrons carry a negative charge of a particular value in coulombs.


Electric charge is the physical attribute of the body that causes it to experience a force when located in an electric or a magnetic field.

Electron is a stable light subatomic particle with a charge, found in all atoms, acts as primary carrier of electricity in conductors.


Charge is an attribute that particles have when they are not neutral.

Electrons have the most stable electronic configuration that are responsible for all the physical and chemical phenomena in the world.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Write properties of electron

All matter consists of atoms that, in turn, contains protons, neutrons and electrons. Out of these three, electrons are the subatomic particles and they are incapable of being broken and they have three fundamental attributes:

  • Spin: They spin about an axis in a way similar to that of planets.

  • Mass: The rest mass of an electron is 9.1 x 10 ^ - 31 kg or 5.489 x 10 ^ - 4 amu.

Charge: Electrons are negatively charged in nature and have an electric charge of 1.6 x 10^-19 C, which is used as a standard unit of charge for subatomic particles.

2. What will happen to the mass of an electron if it travels with the velocity of light?

Since the electrons have a stationary or rest mass as 9.1 x 10 ^ - 31. However, when an electron starts moving with the velocity of light that means the speed of electron (v)  becomes equal to the speed of light (c) . The mass of the electron would start varying and such variations would be infinite.

3. Write the value of mass of an electron in grams.

The mass of an electron in kg is 9.1 x 10 ^ - 31 kg. Since 1 kg  = 1000 g

Therefore, the mass of an electron in grams is 9.1 x 10 ^ -28 g.