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Cristaline structure: simple solid state physics problem

  1. Mar 9, 2014 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    The atomic mass of Niquel is 58.7 amu (atomic mass unit), and it's density (at 90ºC) is 8.86 g/cm³.

    (a) Find the distance from one atom to the closest one from him.

    2. Relevant equations

    1 amu = 1.66053*19⁻²⁷

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I started by finding the number of atoms per cm³, N:

    [itex]N = \frac{8.86*10^{24}}{1.66053} = 5.3356*10^{24} atoms/cm^{3}[/itex]

    This is where I lose myself. Am I supposed to solve this without knowing the type of unit cell? If I knew it, since I know the number of atoms per cell, I would be able to get the length of the side of the unit cell, and from there I could work out the distance between two atoms next to each other.

    Is there a way to solve this without knowing the unit cell before hand? Or am I supposed to solve it by searching the correct unit cell and following the line of thought I wrote?
    Thanks ahead.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 10, 2014 #2


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    Homework Helper

    You can browse for "Crystal structure of Nickel" or see the Periodic Table http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Periodic_table_(crystal_structure)

    When calculating the number of atoms in 1 cm3, you have to consider the atomic mass of Nickel. Your result is wrong.

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