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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What gives an object its colour?

My understanding of colour is that atoms in a particular object will absorb certain wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation, and the scattered wavelengths give the object its colour. The absorbed ...
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103 views

Does there exist electric field around all the substances?

A system of two equal and opposite charges separated by a certain distance is called an electric dipole. Electric dipole moment ($p$) is defined as the product of either charge ($q$) and the ...
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137 views

Electron Decay, Why are there P and higher orbitals?

Related: Decay from excited state to ground state My confusion arose initially from the definition of binding energy being the lowest energy state (n=1) in the hydrogen atom. This, I assume, is ...
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667 views

Do electrons collapse into nucleus, if electrons in the atom are constantly excited?

From the Bohr's atomic model, it is clear that electron can have only certain definite energy levels. When the electron is present as close to the nucleus as possible, the atom has the minimum ...
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578 views

What is limiting line in series spectrum?

The wavelength of first line in the Balmer Series is 'whatever(in nm)' . Calculate the wavelength of the second line and the 'limiting line' in the Balmer Series. I found this question in an ...
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162 views

Why do electrons couple in atoms?

In describing electron states in hydrogen, we have a very "simple" picture, at least in intro-quantum. But this only has one electron! As we permit more electrons, we also have things like the ...
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327 views

Why is the Bohr's idea of defined circular orbits overruled?

If we consider a thought experiment for determining position of an electron by using photons of light. According to principles of optics, if we use light of wavelength $\lambda$, then the position of ...
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89 views

Gravitational Stark Effect

Could gravity induce line splittings in the optical spectrum of a molecule similar to the Stark or Zeeman Effects? Naively, a gravitational potential would be a simple addition to the Hamiltonian ...
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131 views

What happens when you give excess energy to an atom?

So this is my question: An electron in a hydrogen atom in its ground state absorbs energy equal to the ionisation energy of $Li^{2+}$. The wavelength of the emitted electron is? I started off by ...
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1k views

What prevents an atom's electrons from “collapsing” onto its protons? [duplicate]

Forgive me if the answer to this is obvious. I have no formal physics training, and I remember that when I asked my physics teacher this, she just frowned and said "Good question." An electron is ...
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68 views

Possibility of stable muonic structures?

In an analogy to the neutron, which decays rapidly as a free particle, but when bound in a nucleus it is stable, would it be possible to crease a structure that permits the stability of muons - be it ...
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Collision between electron and proton?

What would happen if an electron collided with a proton such that the two do not collapse? Would the two become a unit, or would some force prevent them from bonding thus forcing the electron to orbit ...
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181 views

Probability of absorption and emission of photons

Suppose you have a single electron in a box, and you shoot a single photon at it. How does one calculate the probability that the photon will be absorbed and the particle excited? Or that the photon ...
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92 views

Ramsey Interactions

What are Ramsey interactions? I am researching atomic clocks and am not sure why the atoms need to be exposed twice to an electromagnetic field in order to cause excitation.
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Does an electron move from one excitation state to another, or jump?

I'm wondering, when an electron changes state, does it move from one state to another over some (very small) time period? Or does it change from one state to another in no time? If the former, what ...
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69 views

What are the fastest electron orbitals

I read that the mercury has a low melting point because its outer shell electrons are pulled in close by its nucleus (large nucleus, sparse outer shell) and because its outer shell electrons have ...
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85 views

Is the relative atomic mass directly proportional to the size of an atom? [closed]

I have a piece of homework, i have to make a pair of models depicting pure metals and alloys. I want it to be as accurate as possible, and so i'm asking this: Is the relative atomic mass directly ...
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1answer
143 views

Aren't all electrons the same? So what about electron that absorbs photon?

I learned that electron absorbs a photon and goes into higher energy state. But also all electrons are identical. What is a difference between the electron in low orbital energy state? and the high ...
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141 views

Number of decays in a chain reaction

It is widely known that the probability of $n$ decays from one system to another $A \rightarrow B$ (e.g., electrons decaying from one atomic energy level to another or muons decaying into neutrinos ...
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130 views

Can protons in the nucleus of an atom be aligned by electromagnetic fields?

Can protons in the nucleus of an atom be aligned by electromagnetic fields? If so can it be done around $-135°C$ zero?
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335 views

What laws (formulas) govern forces between atoms?

What laws (formulas) govern the fundamental forces of nature? For example, gravity is governed by the inverse-square law. I am thinking about how particles attract each other, but also repel. All ...
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557 views

How is the speed of light an absolute maximum speed in the universe? [closed]

Under the heading which came first, the chicken or the egg, which came first: the maximum velocity of electrons orbiting the atom, or the speed of light as the maximum velocity limit? Is it possible ...
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173 views

Principle of Reflection on atomic level

The well observed phenomenon has besides several others has always been a fascination to me, we are well aware of several theories, experiments and practical applications of the well known phenomenon. ...
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Why won't protons revolve around the nucleus containing electrons and neutrons?

In case of solar system,we can explain "Why Sun would not revolve around any other planet?",by giving the reason that Sun is heavier than any other planets. Heavier the body,greater will be the ...
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Factors defining interaction between atoms and molecules

Let's say we have a stuff that consists only of hydrogen (H), then we add a single atom of oxygen (O) and they interfere - we get a water molecule where atoms are arranged in a particular way. Then we ...
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205 views

Density matrix and irreducible tensor operators

I'm reading those lecture notes on atomic physics. Yesterday I posed a question on reducible tensors, and today I have a question on their relation to the density matrix. If there's any information ...
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136 views

What does “transform among themselves” mean?

I'm reading a script on atomic physics, and there's a chapter on irreducible tensors. I can't understand the meaning of "transform among themselves" in this context: An arbitrary rotation of the ...
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Why is it energetically favourable for molecular bonds to form from a QM point of view?

For example, if you have two hydrogen atoms and an oxygen atom, they are all electrically neutral and don't attract each other. But then if they manage to get "close enough" somehow they snap together ...
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268 views

Which cyan colored line is produced in the Thomson e/m apparatus?

Related: Which green spectral line(s) are emitted in a Thomson tube? After reading Lisa Lee’s OP on an electron deflection tube, although she had some misunderstandings on its operation, I still ...
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Stern-Gerlach and Hund's second rule

According to Hund's second rule, the spin tends to be maximal. That would, in my understanding, imply that, regarding the Stern-Gerlach experiment, the important electron in a silver atom has spin ...
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1answer
137 views

Which green spectral line(s) are emitted in a Thomson tube?

Related: What is meant by boiling off electrons in a heater coil? In the Thomson tube we used in our class to produce an electron beam, the lab manual stated that the tube was filled with a low ...
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1answer
62 views

Lifetime of 3d state shorter than 3s state in hydrogen atom

Can you say that the lifetime of the 3d state in the hydrogen atom is shorter than the one of the 3s state because the centrifugal energy associated with 3d is higher than the one associated with 3s? ...
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65 views

Stress and Mass Density Distribution

I'm simulating electromigration in a copper wire using COMSOL and trying to see the back-stress caused by material transport. However, I do not see any stress growth. In other words, the atomic ...
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1answer
26 views

Electron configurations and $M_{s}$ quantum numbers

I have a little question that are confusing me at bit. I have to argue, from the Pauli Exclusion Principle, that $M_{s} = 2$ is the maximum $M_{s}$ quantum number for the $nd^{6}$ configuration. Now, ...
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52 views

Why can I see the 5D0 to 7F3 transition in the trivalent Eu?

According to the selection rules of the intra-configurational f-f transitions, if the J of the initial or final state is zero, a transition with $\Delta J = 3$ is forbidden by electrical dipole, ...
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Quantum Mechanical Meaning of Atomic Orbitals

According to quantum mechanics, for multi-electron atoms, a single electron around the nuclei can be in the state of linear combination of different eigen energy states. In that case, even the energy ...
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1answer
137 views

Volume charge density of H-atom

I have a problem where I am supposed to calculate the volume charge density of a neutral hydrogen atom. The potential is given to be $$ \Phi = k \frac{e^{-ar}}{r} \left(1 + \frac{ar}{2}\right) $$ Now ...
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1answer
356 views

A Simple Explanation for the Schrödinger Equation and Model of Atom? [closed]

I tried reading the Wikipedia article to no avail - I simply cannot understand the Schrödinger Equation (what does each of the variables mean, especially the wave function), and the Schrödinger Model ...
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814 views

Continuous vs. Discrete Spectra in various materials

I read that the reason solids emit continuous spectra is that they don't have time to let their electrons decay-they are too close together. Given that electrons decay on the order of 100 nanoseconds ...
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1answer
311 views

Hydrogen ground state energy calculation?

We want to find the energy of a hydrogen atom ($Z=1$) in the ground state $$ \psi_{100} = \frac{1}{\sqrt{\pi}}e^{-r}\ \ \ \ \ \ (\mbox{atomic units}) $$ with Hamiltonian $$ H = ...
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1answer
73 views

Some questions regarding the behaviour of electrons [closed]

If I understand correctly: An atom acts a potential well for the electrons -- and particles in a potential well have discrete energy levels. There is a non-zero minimum to this energy called the ...
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1answer
174 views

How to theoretically determine the angular momentum of an atom?

To determine if an atom is a boson or a fermion I have to count the fermions that constitute the atom (protons, neutrons and electrons). My question is: How to theoretically (as opposed to ...
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683 views

Why do most metals appear silver in color with gold being an exception from a scattering and EM viewpoint?

Related: Why are most metals gray/silver? After reading Johannes’ impressive answer to Ali Abbasinasab question of why do most metals appear silver in color with the exception of gold (and copper), ...
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677 views

Why are the classical electron radius, the Bohr radius and the Compton wavelength of an electron related to each other?

Using the definition of the fine-structure constant $\alpha = \frac{4 \pi \epsilon_0 \hbar c}{e^2}$ and the Compton wavelength of an electron $\lambda_c = \frac{h}{m_e c}$ the classical electron ...
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178 views

Distinction between Larmor frequency and Rabi frequency

Wikipedia said "In the context of a nuclear magnetic resonance experiment, the Rabi frequency is the nutation frequency of a sample's net nuclear magnetization vector about a radiofrequency field. ...
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52 views

What happens when an ion hits an electron?

For example: $Xe^{+}+e^{-} \rightarrow Xe + \mbox{energy}$ Assuming that the electron has a kinetic energy $\neq 0$. Is the released energy a photon or heat?
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If atoms never “physically” touch each others, then how does matter-antimatter annihilation happen?

It is known that matter and antimatter annihilate each others when they "touch" each others. And as far as I know, the concept of "touching" as our brain gets it is not true on the atomic level since ...
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1answer
65 views

Difference between photo electron spectrum and photoelectron angular distribution

I am trying to learn the Photoelectron velocity map imaging. While I was going through the article "Chem. Soc. Rev., 2009,38,2169-2177", it is said that the "photoelectron spectrum reflects the energy ...
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384 views

The Quantization of Photon Energies

Despite Planck's constant being in $E=hf$, it would appear to me that energy is still not discrete, as frequency can be an fraction of a Hertz that one wants. How does this imply that electromagnetic ...
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Is a “supercritical charge” in graphene similar to Hawking Radiation?

These papers describe a phenomenon referred to as "atomic collapse" and "supercritical charge" in graphene: Wang et al., Pereira et al. "Atomic collapse" appears when you have a large enough Coulomb ...