A particle is a minute fragment or quantity of matter. In the physical sciences, a particle is a small localized object to which can be ascribed several physical or chemical properties such as volume or mass. Particles can also be used to create models of even larger objects depending on their density. The term particle is rather general in meaning, and is refined as needed by various scientific fields, something that is composed of particles may be referred to as being particulate. However, the particulate is most frequently used to refer to pollutants in the Earths atmosphere. The concept of particles is particularly useful when modelling nature, as the treatment of many phenomena can be complex. It can be used to make simplifying assumptions concerning the processes involved, francis Sears and Mark Zemansky, in University Physics, give the example of calculating the landing location and speed of a baseball thrown in the air. The treatment of large numbers of particles is the realm of statistical physics, the term particle is usually applied differently to three classes of sizes. The term macroscopic particle, usually refers to particles much larger than atoms and these are usually abstracted as point-like particles, or even invisible. This is even though they have volumes, shapes, structures, examples of macroscopic particles would include powder, dust, sand, pieces of debris during a car accident, or even objects as big as the stars of a galaxy. Another type, microscopic particles usually refers to particles of sizes ranging from atoms to molecules, such as carbon dioxide, nanoparticles and these particles are studied in chemistry, as well as atomic and molecular physics. The smallest of particles are the particles, which refer to particles smaller than atoms. These particles are studied in particle physics, because of their extremely small size, the study of microscopic and subatomic particles fall in the realm of quantum mechanics. Particles can also be classified according to composition, composite particles refer to particles that have composition – that is particles which are made of other particles. For example, an atom is made of six protons, eight neutrons. By contrast, elementary particles refer to particles that are not made of other particles, according to our current understanding of the world, only a very small number of these exist, such as the leptons, quarks or gluons. However it is possible some of these might turn up to be composite particles after all. While composite particles can very often be considered point-like, elementary particles are truly punctual, both elementary and composite particles, are known to undergo particle decay
Arc welders need to protect themselves from welding sparks, which are heated metal particles that fly off the welding surface.
Galaxies are so large that stars can be considered particles relative to them