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, ...

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Atom in a box and collapse of the wave-function

Suppose I have an atom trapped in an optically transparent box. I'm assuming the atom is bouncing off of the walls and not bonding, i.e. the center of mass of the atom experiences a square well. Now ...
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How to calculate the $g$ degeneracy factor for alkali metals and their singly ionized species?

The Saha ionization equation is $$\frac{n(X_{i+1})}{n(X_{i})} = \frac{(2\pi m k T)^{1.5}}{n_e h^3}\frac{2g_{i+1}}{g_{i}}e^{-\chi/kT}$$ where $\chi$ is the energy difference between the two ...
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Spectroscopic notation for more than one excited electron

In spectroscopy, notation like $^3S_1$ or similar is often used to define atomic states. This is unambiguous when considering only a single electron excited from the outermost energy level. But how ...
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36 views

How can we tell if a molecule is in thermodynamic equilibrium from scattering data?

We have a molecule that is emitting/absorbing photons. We know the Hamiltonian and that there are several levels. We count the emitted photons at different angles and frequencies. We can also do ...
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36 views

Theory on what would happen if a proton touches anouther [on hold]

I came up with a theory on what would happen if two protons touched each other. I want to know if it is scientifically valid. If two protons repel each other, then the closer you bring them together, ...
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2answers
25 views

How can the fact an electron is in a stable orbit eliminate kinetic energy from the total energy formula?

Since the potential of a point charge with respect to another is $F=k\dfrac{Q_1Q_2}{r}$, where $k=\dfrac{1}{4\pi\epsilon_0}$, the potential of an orbital electron is $V=-k\dfrac{Ze^2}{r}$, where ...
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1answer
29 views

Correlation between Bohr-model and quantum physics

If you're looking at the probability of finding the electron of a hydrogen atom at a distance $r$ from the nucleus, it turns out that the Bohr model for the radius of the orbit only correlates with ...
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21 views

How to calculate the atomic form factor of Lithium? [closed]

I have a density function, $\rho=e^{\frac{-2r}{\pi a^3}}$, and I have also two numbers, but I don't know what they mean. They are: $a_k=0.2 \mathring A$ angstrom, $a_l=1.6 \mathring A$ . And teacher ...
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2answers
111 views

Why do electrons orbit protons? [duplicate]

I was wondering why electrons orbited protons rather than protons orbiting electrons. My first thought was that it was due to the small amount of gravitational attraction between them that would ...
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11 views

Applicability of Fano resonance

I know that Fano resonance$^{1,2}$ can be applied for the interaction between a discrete excited state, $|\phi_0\rangle$, and a continuum of excited states, $|\phi_E\rangle$. These are related to ...
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32 views

Charge density within radius r from the nucleus

The probability of finding an electron within radius $r_b$ for Hydrogen near the center ($r_b<< a_0$) is approximately equal to zero (according to 1s orbital curve). Does this imply that the ...
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37 views

What holds an atom together? [closed]

1)The nucleus is made of protons which should electrically repel each other and yet the nucleus stays together. Why? 2)Electrostatic forces keep the electrons orbiting the nucleus.But why don't they ...
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1answer
67 views

Why does nuclear waste have to be stored until the constituent elements decay naturally?

Fair warning, I have a bachelors in CS and have chemistry 211/212 under my belt. My understanding of the atom consists of a proton, neutron, and electron quasi-orbiting it in some sort of strange ...
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1answer
67 views

Reproductibility of the effects described in US patent 8,419,919

US patent 8,419,919, by P. Boss, F. Gordon, S. Szpak, and L. Forsley, describes what (I summarize) would be a method to perform particle generation leading to atomic transmutation, by palladium ...
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1answer
70 views

Rewriting the Hydrogen Schrodinger Equation as a system of differential equations

I have only ever seen the Schrodinger equation for the hydrogen atom written out in a form like this: $$ -\frac{\hbar^2}{2\mu}\left[\frac{1}{r^2}\frac{\partial}{\partial r}\left(r^2\frac{\partial ...
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1answer
43 views

Total magnetic moment in an atom

I have a doubt regarding the calculation of total angular momentum of electron in an atom.Which is the right way to do it? Method 1: Total magnetic moment $$ \begin{align} \vec{\mu_J} &= ...
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1answer
67 views

Where is quantum physics with regards to the periodic table?

In his Lecture's on Physics (circa 1960's) Richard Feynman wrote that so far physics has only been able to model (solve) the hydrogen and helium atoms. So now, more than 50 year's later where are we ...
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43 views

Question about one of the problems of the Bohr model

This is probably extremely basic physics that I don't know, but I'm still going to ask: Say in hydrogen, according to the Bohr model the electron is "really" orbiting the proton, and as a consequence ...
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2answers
74 views

What's the difference between hopping and tunneling?

My professor made a distinction between electron hopping (the closest wikipedia had an article on) and tunneling, saying that one (he didn't say which, but I assume hopping) was temperature dependent ...
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3answers
101 views

Dexcitation/Excitation of $e^-$ in Bohr Model

My teacher told me that (in his words): When an $e^-$ is excited in Bohr Model to $n^{th}$ energy level, then $e^-$ stays in this energy level fora very short time of the order of $10^{-8}$ ...
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4answers
654 views

Why do electrons in an atom occupy only the stationary states?

When we talk about the elementary problems in quantum mechanics like particle in a box, we first calculate the energy eigen-function. Then we say that the most general state is the linear combination ...
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36 views

List of laser-cooled atoms and ions

I'm familiar with the requirements for an atom or ion to be cool-able with laser cooling -- a closed transition -- or close enough that the leaks can be plugged with repumpers. But is there a list of ...
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1answer
41 views

Is fluorescence from a single atom/ion visible with the naked eye (e.g. in a strongly coupled trap or cavity)

I remember sitting in on a conference talk by a person (possibly Rainer Blatt) doing research with trapped ions (or single atoms strongly coupled to light in an optical cavity), and the person showed ...
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Why does electron move in an elliptical path?

According to Sommerfeld's atomic model, an electron moving around a central positively charged nucleus is influenced by the nuclear charge. As a result of which, the electron moves in an elliptical ...
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How to read this state in quantum physics?

I am having a little trouble understanding this state: $$ \,^3D\left[3/2\right]_{1/2} $$ What does the $[3/2]$ indicate here?
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148 views

Is there only radial motion in the Hydrogen ground state?

The ground state of the Hydrogen atom is spherically symmetric. In other words, the wave function Psi depends only on the distance r of the electron from the nucleus. As a consequence all ...
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1answer
31 views

Everyday Low-Energy Atom Collider

During the shearing of metal in a machining process, what exactly is the source of the heat that is produced? I realize that the energy is coming from the work being done by the cutting tool. I am ...
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36 views

Are the electric charges of an electron and a proton equal or approximately equal? [duplicate]

I read in Auletta's quantum mechanics (section 11.2) that the charge of the proton is, apart from the sign, approximately equal to that of the electron.. What ...
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1answer
33 views

Is the emission spectrum of a muonic atom different?

From my quick investigation, the spectrum is based on the Rydberg formula, and with a small change, would lead to $$ {1 \over \lambda_\mu} = {m_\mu \over m_e} \left( R \left( {1\over n_1^2} - ...
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2answers
506 views

Trouble understanding the Bohr model of the atom

In this article it says: The electrons can only orbit stably, without radiating, in certain orbits (called by Bohr the "stationary orbits") at a certain discrete set of distances from the nucleus. ...
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4answers
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Why is the sky never green? It can be blue or orange, and green is in between!

I, like everybody I suppose, have read the explanations why the colour of the sky is blue: ... the two most common types of matter present in the atmosphere are gaseous nitrogen and oxygen. ...
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1answer
29 views

Reconciling electron subshell configurations and the Pauli exlcusion principle

I'd like to prefix this with an apology: I have no formal training in QP, and most of what I know has been obtained by reading Wikipedia. As such, it'd be really helpful if any answers took my lack of ...
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1answer
452 views

What is the difference between the Bohr model of the atom and Schrödinger's model?

What is the difference between the Bohr model of the atom and The solution of the Schrödinger equation for the hydrogen atom? Are there any difference between definition of the electric potential ...
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1answer
47 views

Why is cesium used to measure time in atomic clocks?

Seconds are measured by the frequency emission of cesium. Why is a frequency from the emission spectrum of cesium used as the standard in defining a second? Why particularly cesium?
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638 views

Miniature Neutron Stars?

Is the nucleus of a carbon atom, for example, as dense as a neutron star? I read that neuton stars also contain protons. Thinking more broadly, are we surrounded by quadrillion of quadrillions of ...
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1answer
27 views

Hydrogen Spectra [closed]

I am talking about hydrogen spectral lines such as Lyman, Balmer etc. In order to make those spectral lines series more than one electron are needed to jump from higher orbits to lower orbit. But ...
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69 views

Why is graphene the only (stable) 2D sheet structure? [duplicate]

I know that Carbon molecules can form different structures depending on how they bond with each other: graphite, diamond, graphene and fullerene. As far as I understand, graphene is just a "sheet" of ...
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55 views

Why are atoms with a complete octet the most stable ones? [duplicate]

I mean are the valence electrons in an octet arranged so that they have the lesser amount of energy that is lesser than electrons in other atoms?
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1answer
84 views

Is there any defect in Rutherford's atomic model according to quantum theory?

According to quantum mechanics charged bodies do not emit energy. Then why the atomic model of Rutherford has the defects of collapsing nucleus, continues spectrum.
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What happens inside a body when it rotates?

I'm studying rigid body dynamics lately. I came across the definition of torque, and though I've found a lot of explanations as to why there is an r there (the moment), all of them are mathematical ...
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Approach to model solvent in a lattice: e.g. H2O in NaCl

If a lattice contains a solvent, lets say NaCl and water of crystallisation, what is the condition for a solvent molecule to change it's location? From my current point of view I assume that such a ...
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2answers
992 views

How does an electron move around in an orbital? Is it “wave-like” or random?

When an electron is moving around in it's orbital, is it actually moving around like a wave, like this video shows? (By wave-like, I mean, the "electron" in this video is showing it following a ...
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4answers
190 views

How does the electron jump across “gaps” in its orbital?

I saw on perhaps COSMOS, and have heard mention from other professors, that electrons sort of "teleport" or something, in their orbital and the quantum level. So looking at the orbitals for a lone ...
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1answer
43 views

Why is the full eigen function is product of eigen functions and not addition?

For example suppose there is a two electron system. Why is the full eigen function product of the spatial eigen function and spin wave function for the two electron system?
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1answer
119 views

Question about atom subshells

So my teacher told me that EACH shell contains 5 subshells (s, p, d, f, g) but what I don't understand is this The 1st shell has only 1 subshell (and not 5 like he said) and the number of ...
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1answer
48 views

Eigenfunctions for $1s$ hydrogen Schrodinger equation

I am a computer scientist and started my Phd in material science. The second course os my Phd is material simulation by computer. One the task is show the verification of the eigenfunction $1s$ from ...
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172 views

Why does electron move closer to the nucleus when it emits light and not vice-versa?

The book tells me that electrons move more close to the nucleus when emission occurs and it moves far away from the nucleus when absorption occurs: why it's not vice-vers? As I understand, the ...
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Stimulated emission and coherence

For a significant part of my life I have been taught that, if a photon of the "correct" energy meets an excited atom, the atom will then (with a certain probability) undergo transition to a lower ...
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4answers
253 views

Bond Angles - H2O vs CO2

H2O has a 109.5 degree bond angle, but CO2 has exactly 180 degrees. Is there a qualitative reason for this? It's hard to believe CO2 is exactly 180 degrees unless there were some symmetry, but the ...
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3answers
243 views

Why can't electrons fall into the nucleus?

I read a book on pop sci book on quantum mechanics and the author said that electrons do not fall into the nucleus due to quantum mechanics- which principles suggest this (I think it was Heisenberg's ...