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How were atomic numbers exactly determined?

  1. Aug 16, 2012 #1
    Pardon my ignorance please, but they never taught us about that in school. I've never seen any mention in any of the chemistry/physics/electronics textbooks that I've ever read about how the atomic numbers of each element were empirically found in the first place. I understand it has something to do with Moseley's law, but how exactly does that help determine the number of protons an atom contains?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 16, 2012 #2
  4. Aug 25, 2012 #3
  5. Sep 1, 2012 #4
    Oh wow. Thank you so much, JohnRC! And you too Greg Bernhardt. I had already read the wiki article on it, but I wanted a little more detailed account (However, I just found that Moseley's paper is cited in the wiki page. I feel bad for that).

    Thanks, again guys! :)
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2012
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