Atomic physics is the field of physics that studies atoms as an isolated system of electrons and an atomic nucleus. It is primarily concerned with the arrangement of electrons around the nucleus and the processes by which these arrangements change. This includes ions as well as neutral atoms and, ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms (3)

0
votes
1answer
51 views

Basic concepts on Electricity [on hold]

How do electrons move? I mean really do they move? I read that they move in circular shells AROUND THE NUCLEUS. How can they move in the conductor? I have read that there are valent electrons that ...
0
votes
2answers
51 views

Is there a word for all the particles in an atom?

That is to say, is there a word that picks out protons, neutrons, AND electrons, rather than just saying "nucleons plus electrons"?
1
vote
0answers
18 views

symmetry group of multi-electron atom

Neglecting spin effects, the energy levels of multi-electron atoms are characterized by states of definite total orbital ($L^2$) and spin angular momentum ($S^2$). From this it seems that the ...
0
votes
3answers
38 views

How does any vibrating object generate sound?

We all know that vibration is the cause of sound generation. But here my question is, Internally what happens in vibrating object which creates sound? I guess, generation of sound will be some where ...
0
votes
2answers
44 views

Radioactivity, alpha decay [duplicate]

In alpha decay, a $\text{He}$ nucleus is emited along with a daughter nuclide. Now suppose $\text{U}$ with atomic number 92 and atomic mass 238 emits an alpha particle and a daughter nuclide is formed ...
0
votes
2answers
31 views

Molecules from atoms [closed]

Why does two oxygen atoms combine to form a molecule and not 3 or 4?Also why does one sodium and one chlorine atom combine to form NaCl while two chlorine atoms are required to combine with one ...
0
votes
2answers
33 views

Question on heat

Is this statement correct? The oxygen and nitrogen molecules in a box has equal average kinetic energy but the oxygen molecules are faster. I am not sure because I thought oxygen molecules should move ...
1
vote
1answer
21 views

Complex scaling method for solving resonance states

I am now reading about the complex scaling method for solving resonance states. As far as I understand, the procedure goes like this: Let us take the 1d potential $V(x) = A e^{-x^2} x^2 $ as an ...
3
votes
3answers
45 views

What is nuclide notation referring to? Only the nucleus or the whole atom?

sorry that this is an easy question but I am just a bit confused about nuclide notation. When you say e.g. $^{240}_{94}\text{Pu}$, are you referring to the atom of $\text{Pu}$ or only its nucleus? It ...
1
vote
0answers
31 views

How is an atom ionized by electron impact?

Can someone walk me through in detail what happens when an atom is ionized by colliding with an electron? I would prefer a solid example so I can understand it more concretely. What I think:- -The ...
1
vote
2answers
32 views

What does excitation in an atom mean?

This is not regarding the definition of excitation itself. What I'm having trouble with is the difference between "electron excitation" and "atom excitation". When I electron inside the atom gets ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

What happens when an electron collides with an atom?

I was solving this question: Here is part of the energy level diagram of hydrogen: n=4 --> -0.85eV n=3 --> -1.50eV n=2 --> -3.40eV n=1 --> -13.6eV When an electron of ...
0
votes
2answers
39 views

Energy transitions of 12.1eV electron?

Here is part of the energy level diagram of hydrogen: n=4 --> -0.85eV n=3 --> -1.50eV n=2 --> -3.40eV n=1 --> -13.6eV When an electron of energy 12.1eV collides with this ...
0
votes
2answers
32 views

Definition of “first excitation energy”?

I was solving a problem but I didn't know what the term "first excitation energy" means. The first excitation energy of the hydrogen atom is $10.2\text{eV}$. Calculate the speed of the slowest ...
1
vote
1answer
23 views

Sub-structure of hyperfine levels

In studying introductory atomic physics I have come across fine structure splittings in energy levels due to spin-orbit coupling. Which has a sub-structure called hyperfine structure which comes from ...
2
votes
2answers
32 views

Why is there no electric dipole term in the Hyperfine Hamiltonian?

I have been looking a several discussions of hyperfine structure. (For example: here and in the explanation for eq. 2.1 here It seems that the hyperfine interaction can be explained almost entirely ...
2
votes
1answer
64 views

Algebraic solution of Dirac equation for Coulomb potential

The Runge-Lenz operator enables an algebraic solution of Coulomb potential energy levels without a solution of a differential equation. What is the analog for the solution of the Dirac equation in a ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Are there unobservable, undiscovered atoms?

Is it possible that there is a network of atomic activity that our current scientific instrumentation cannot detect? In other words, could it be possible that there are unobservable, undiscovered ...
1
vote
0answers
17 views

About atomic transitions

I accomplished my homework but it opened a whole pandora's box of things I do not quite understand, so I would appreciate help. In x direction linearly polarized light excites atom transition from ...
2
votes
0answers
38 views

Understanding quantum coherence in biological processes (Magnetoreception)

Moved my questions to the top. Context below. Why is the strength of the electric field and the coupling constant being compared to the inverse coherence time? What is the inverse coherence time? Is ...
1
vote
1answer
31 views

How does Nitrogen transition between a quarter and a doublet state?

My degree was in Electrical Engineering, and as a result I don't fully understand the formatting of the ${}^4S_{3/2}$ ${}^2D_{3/2}$ and ${}^2P_{1/2}$ of the different 2p orbitals, and I don't believe ...
4
votes
1answer
53 views

Orbital angular momentum of electrons

In a QM class, to study the hydrogen atom, we started by defining the Hamiltonian $H$ for a central potential, then made an orbital angular momentum operator appear as part of $H$, then down the line ...
0
votes
0answers
40 views

what is a clock state?

What is a clock state in atomic physics ? I read this term here http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2708678/ and tried to find a reference to explain the same but have been unable to find this ...
3
votes
2answers
90 views

Can someone explain the quote “there would be no chemistry if electrons acted as bosons”?

I am reading a book and in a quote it says that if electrons acted as bosons, then all the electrons would occupy the lowest energy state, and there would be no chemistry. What does the author mean ...
0
votes
3answers
34 views

Database of experimental cross sections for atomic collisions

Does the atomic-physics community keep a comprehensive database of experimental data (cross sections) for atomic collisions? I am looking for data about Bremsstrahlung, ionization, elastic and ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

Apparatus for generating plasma

I'm working on a project which involves superheating nitrogen to a state of plasma. I was considering using my Fusor, but this project has nothing to do with plasma, and I believe that there are way ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

Is the Singlet state for Helium with 2 electrons symmetric rather than anti-symmetric as is meant to be for fermions?

I'm looking at two-electron Helium atoms where one electron is in the ground state (due to if it were in other states, it's de-excitation would simply lead to the ionization of the electron). The ...
0
votes
1answer
11 views

What happens to the velocity map image if the plane of polarization is not on the plane of the detector?

In an electron Velocity Map Imaging (in Velocity Map Imaging in general) it is required that the plane of polarization to be parallel to the plane of the detector (in other words, plane or ...
1
vote
1answer
20 views

Since electron clouds of different atoms repel each other, does that mean that touch is the feeling of electromagnetic repulsion? [duplicate]

Also when we rest our hand on an object does that mean we are effectively levitating because of the repulsion of the electron clouds?
2
votes
0answers
27 views

Atomic physics, determining levels and terms

In atomic physics I understand there a configurations, terms and levels. I think levels for instance appear because of spin-orbit interactions, so that terms are split. But I'm confused about the ...
-2
votes
1answer
55 views

Why is it necessary to supply constant electricity to make a laser work?

As we know that in lasers there are excited atoms. When energy is provided in the form of light, heat or electricity to these atoms, these excited atoms after sometime go to a lower state of energy ...
0
votes
0answers
31 views

What is the largest atom with a reliable configuration-interaction (CI) calculation?

The simplest approximation for calculating the ground state of an atom is the Hartree-Fock approximation. To get accurate result for the ground state energy, one has to do configuration-interaction ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

About sub-atomic physics and the models used

I sit true every sub-atomic particle can have a mathematical representation as a wave? Can an electron and a proton and a neutron be represented as waves? Regarding every theory about sub-atomic ...
1
vote
0answers
29 views

What happens when you use an electric field to match atom oscillations?

I've been thinking about this question for the last few days: "What happens when you either use an electric field or sound / light to match the frequency of the atomic lattice?" What would happen to ...
0
votes
2answers
64 views

Bohr/De Broglie simplfied model - joining orbitals

I understand that Quantum Mechanics has taken over and fully explains this but I'm struggling to understand in terms of the old model. Bohr's model as modified by de Broglie suggested that orbits ...
2
votes
0answers
42 views

Are ultracold atoms only created by intelligent life?

Nature has particle accelerators that are far beyond our capacity, but occasionally I hear atomic physicists claim that they are able to make something that has never been formed in any natural ...
2
votes
0answers
38 views

Why is the water diamagnetic?

I checked using my permanent magnet that water is diamagnetic. But why is it like that? Does this have any important consequence for life?
1
vote
1answer
25 views

What happens to the nucleus energy when it decays?

When an atom decays into another atom, what happens to the potential energy of the nucleus ? I think it will get more negative because, in general, through fission and fusion an atom tries to get a ...
2
votes
1answer
65 views

Why is energy released during decay?

Why is energy released when an atom decays into another atom, even though no energy is added? What does the mass defect mean? Is it because a nucleus which decays is unstable (proton/neutron = 1)? ...
1
vote
0answers
68 views

How does quantum mechanics explain stability of electron orbitals? [duplicate]

According to classical physics, an electron orbiting the nucleus would emit electromagnetic radiation. Losing energy in that way, it would spiral into the nucleus and the atom would collapse. Quantum ...
3
votes
1answer
49 views

Why is the photoelectric absorption coefficient finite at the threshold frequency?

I mean the photoelectric effect of the hydrogen atom. It is weird. By the Fermi golden rule, the transition or absorption rate is proportional to the density of the final states. At threshold, the ...
1
vote
2answers
168 views

Binding energy of Helium and repulsion of protons

I've just done an exercise of computing the binding energy of Helium 4, which is around 27,43 MeV. Obviously the binding energy "compensates" for the repulsion between the protons due to their ...
2
votes
1answer
60 views

is it possible to confine an atom in a container

Is it possible to confine an atom in a container for an indeterminate period of time? A possibly better way of phrasing the question: is it possible to block an atom from passing through an object?
6
votes
4answers
428 views

Why aren't orbitals symmetric?

In an hydrogen-like atoms the orbitals are solutions to the Schrodinger equation suitable for the problem. They describe the regions where an electron can be found. So, why don't they have spherical ...
1
vote
1answer
89 views

Does O$^{2-}$ really exist?

In chemistry it is common sense that we have O$^{2-}$. But from a physical point of view, does O$^{2-}$ really exist as a negative ion? I mean, as an isolated ion. It is not apparent that a neutral ...
1
vote
1answer
29 views

Carbon 14 disintegration

When $\beta^-$ disintegration happens to a Carbon 14 atom, a neutron "turns into" a proton, and an electron is emitted. Therefore the result of the disintegration is a Nitrogen atom plus an electron ...
0
votes
0answers
42 views

mirror nuclei: accounting for the difference in mass between nuclei

I was wondering if anyone here could guide me in the right direction with respect to the following problem: two nuclei are considered mirror nuclei if interchanging the neutrons and protons turns one ...
0
votes
0answers
48 views

The Internal Structure of A Nucleon [duplicate]

Just like, in a Bohr model, the atom has a particular structure, what is it like inside of a nucleon? Like, are there particular ways the quarks are arranged, and what about the binding energy that ...
10
votes
2answers
821 views

How is the number of electrons in an atom found?

I was wondering, what type of experiments were held to identify the number of electrons in an atom? (For example, how do we say that carbon has 6 electrons and magnesium 12.) I would like someone to ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

2s orbital wavefunction has non-zero probability at $r=0$? [duplicate]

The wavefunction for an electron within a hydrogen atom in the $2s$ state has the following wavefunction: ...