You're right that none of the transition metal
atoms have an overall charge.In fact this is true
of all atoms!
An atom is made up of 3
kinds of particles:
electrons (which are
negatively charged), protons (which are positively
charged) and neutrons (which don't have a charge).
In an atom, there is always the same number of
electrons as protons, so overall there isn't an
excess of positive or negative charge.
not possible to change the number of protons in an
atom easily (in fact when one does this, one
changes the atom into another kind of element!)
but it's possible to add or subtract electrons to
form what we call ions. If you add electrons you
make a negatively charged ion (called an anion);
if you remove electrons your ion is positively
charged (called a cation).
atoms are quite good at giving up electrons, and
so they can form positively charged cations. But
in the atomic state they are always neutral.
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