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a subsidiary unit of energy, equal to the energy acquired by a particle having an elementary charge, oi the charge of an electron, when the particle is moved in an accelerating electric field between two points with a potential difference of 1 volt. The international symbol is eV.
One electron volt equals 1.60219 x 10–19 joule. Multiple units are also used. For example, the kiloelectron volt (keV) equals 103 eV; the megaelectron volt (MeV) equals 106 eV.
The masses of elementary particles are often expressed in electron volts. Such usage is based on the Einstein mass-energy relation E = mc2. The equation relates the mass m of a particle and the particle’s total energy E; c is the speed of light. The energy corresponding to an atomic mass unit is (931.5016 ± 0.0026) MeV.