atomic mass unit

Science Dictionary
atomic mass unit  
A unit of mass equal to 1/12 the mass of an atom of the most common isotope of carbon (carbon 12), which is assigned a mass of 12 and has a value of 1.660 × 10-24 grams. A hydrogen atom has a mass of 1 atomic mass unit since its mass is 1/12 the mass of carbon 12. Also called dalton.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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