Name Carbon
Symbol C
Atomic Number 6
Atomic Mass 12.011 atomic mass units
Number of Protons 6
Number of Neutrons 6
Number of Electrons 6
Melting Point 3500.0 C
Boiling Point 4827.0 C
Density 2.62 grams per cubic centimeter
Normal Phase Solid
Family Nonmetals
Period 2
Cost Unavailable



Origin of Name From the Latin word carbo, meaning coal
Date and Place of Discovery Known to the ancients
Discovered by Unknown but A. L. Lavoisier was the first to name the element and to work significantly with it.
Common Compounds There are almost 10 million carbon compounds and they are studied in organic chemistry classes. Some of the most common compounds are:
Interesting facts
  • It is found free in nature.
  • There are at least four distinct forms of carbon making it an allotropy.
  • Graphite and diamonds are the two most common forms of carbon.
  • There are more carbon compounds than there are compounds of all other elements combined.
  • It is found in abundance in the sun, stars, comets, and the atmospheres of most planets.
  • Carbon-14, a radioactive isotope of carbon, is used to find the age of dead things by using radiocarbon dating.
Common Uses
  • The greatest single use of carbon is in the form of coke for the iron and steel industry
  • Ink for printing
  • Paint
  • Pencils
  • Plastic
  • Insulation
  • All forms of the aerospace industry (rockets, missiles)


Photo Courtesy of
Carondelet High School
Chemical Elements
Jefferson Labs

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