This Review presents electron affinities of atoms and structures of atomic negative ions. The negative ion properties of many elements in the main groups of the Periodic Table were well known in the late 20th century. However, our knowledge of the atomic negative ions of transitional elements, lanthanides, and actinides was completely lacking or largely rather qualitative at that time. Substantial progress both on experimental and theoretical sides in this subject has happened during the last two decades. New developments in the experimental methods that yield accurate electron affinities are described in this Review. Based on the previous reviews, a survey of the electron affinity toward the completion of the Periodic Table is presented. A set of atomic electron affinities and energy levels of atomic anions is recommended.

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