Difference between Photon and Electron

Physics is indeed a complex field and that is why you find the field to be full of extremely smart people, or geniuses to be more precise.

There are different branches in physics, one of which is quantum mechanics. The field is relatively new and a lot of work is being done on it in order to understand the complexities that are invisible to the naked eye.

Anyone who is even remotely familiar with quantum physics would be aware of the existence of electrons and photons. In order to attain an understanding of quantum mechanics, it is imperative to understand the two concepts and how they differ from each other.

The very definition of an electron and photon clearly highlights the difference between the two concepts. The former is basically a sub-atomic particle or mass, whereas the latter is defined as a packet of energy.

Another thing that sets the two concepts apart is their mass at rest. While an electron continues to have a mass even at rest, the same is not the case with a photon.

An electron and photon differ from each other on the account of the maximum speed that can be attained by them. Photon beats an electron when it comes to speed, as it can travel at the speed of light. For an electron, attaining the speed of light is theoretically impossible.

The comparison between an electron and photon is not complete without the mention of their properties. An electron displays more particle properties, whereas a photon displays more wave properties.


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    Photon is a packet of energy. It typically represents a quantum of light or some electromagnetic radiation. The concept is commonly discussed in wave mechanics and understandably so, as photon displays the properties of waves when in motion. It has a mass, but this mass is only noticeable when a photon is moving.

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    Electron is a mass. It is a sub-atomic particle and has a negative charge. An electron is typically found orbiting the nucleus, which is positively charged, on an atom. Electrons play a major role in atomic or molecular bonding. Electrons are considered to be the lightest particles in existence, having a mass only merely 9.11 x 10-31 kilograms. Most of the properties displayed by an electron are similar to that of particles. A travelling electron displays properties of a wave particle.

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