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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Is it reasonable to interpret the Lamb shift as vacuum induced Stark shifts?

This is a pretty hand-wavy question about interpretation of the Lamb shift. I understand that one can calculate the Lamb shift diagrammatically to get an accurate result, but there exist ...
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322 views

What is the Landé g factor?

What is the Landé g factor? I know that it gives the relation between magnetic moment and angular moment, but i wanted to know why are those magnitudes related to each other and why is the magnetic ...
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28 views

Natural linewidth of hyperfine levels?

The D2 line of $^{87}Rb$ is the transition between the $5^2$$P_{3/2}$ and the $5^2$$S_{1/2}$ states. Its linewidth $\Gamma$ is always quoted to be $\sim 6 MHz$. But both states have hyperfine ...
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50 views

What is the physical meaning of the parameter of a Poisson distribution?

I have done a laboratory session at my university where I had to check that the disintegration of nucleii follows a Poisson distribution. $$P(n)=\frac{\lambda^n}{n!} e^{-\lambda}$$ Where $P(n)$ is ...
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72 views

Driving $\sigma$ transition with light in superposition of $\pi_x$ and $\pi_y$ polarization of slightly different frequencies

Lets assume the following experiment. Circularly polarized laser light is sent through a Mach-Zender interferometer $\left(l_1 = l_2 \sim \,\mathrm{cm}\right)$ made up of polarizing beam splitters ...
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37 views

Fermi's understanding of the Doppler effect

I am now reading the classic paper by Dicke, The Effect of Collisions upon the Doppler Width of Spectral Lines At the very beginning of the paper, Dicke said ''Quantum mechanically, the Doppler ...
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99 views

What is a covalent bond?

What is a covalent bond, quantum mechanically? How does it hold the two atoms together, and at one point can you qualify the electron as being shated between two atoms, versus feeling attractive ...
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57 views

how is feshbach resonance potential term physically produced?

In Feshbach resonance model, a 2*2 potential term with space dependent diagonal and non-diagonal terms is written $\left(\begin{array}{cc} V_{11}(\mathbf{r}) & V_{12}(\mathbf{r})\\ ...
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118 views

What are the assumptions behind “term symbols”?

In multi-electron atoms, the electronic state of the optically active "subshell" is often expressed in "term symbols" notation. I.e. $^{2S+1}L_J$. This presumes that the system of electrons has ...
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95 views

Where does one find pair-correlation functions for various materials?

What is the canonical source for finding pair-correlation functions for atoms in various materials? I am interested in both numeric computations and experimental measurements (like might be obtained ...
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26 views

How precisely do we know the van der Waals radius of hydrogen?

I've found several sources that say the van der Waals radius of hydrogen is $120 pm$. How precisely do we know this number? What order of magnitude is the error on this measurement?
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54 views

Estimating temperature with Boltzmann relation with split emission lines

I'm trying to estimate the temperature of a plasma through the use of hydrogen lines, $H_{\alpha}$ and $H_{\beta}$ using the Boltzmann relation: $$ \frac{ n_{2} }{ n_{1} } = \frac{ g_{2} }{ g_{1} ...
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57 views

Does the spin of an electron change when transferred from one atom to another?

Some atoms form bonds when they are given energy to create an excited state.From what I have learnt, every electron is assigned a specific spin quantum number. What I am curious to know,is that, is ...
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38 views

Gamma spectroscopy – What is this structure?

What is this strange structure in the gamma spectrum between 450 and 550 keV (below) around the peak at 477 keV? The spectrum seems to rise to a plateau (almost like a small Compton plateau) around ...
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61 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 ...
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41 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 ...
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54 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?
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78 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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52 views

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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227 views

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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159 views

Limits of integration for the radial wave function of the Hydrogen atom in the WKB approximation

I am working a problem where we have to find the energy eigenvalues for the radial wave function of the hydrogen atom for $\ell=0$ using the WKB approximation. I am sure that I set up the integral ...
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112 views

Geometric quantization in Kepler problem in hydrogen atom

Why in the usual geometric quantization calculation the dimensions of eigenspaces is wrong (we can see this obstacle for Kepler problem in hydrogen atom). Here is a refference see
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57 views

Rydberg quasimolecules & stark states?

I found this image : on the internet and I traced it back to this article ,I wanted to use it as part of an architectural visualization for my project(architecture) but for this to happen I need to ...
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111 views

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 ...
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116 views

Line-shape asymmetry in undergraduate Hydrogen-Deuterium experiment

I'm working as an LA (undergraduate TA) for an undergraduate physics laboratory experiment where students test the Bohr model and use reduced mass to determine the approximate mass of the neutron. In ...
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88 views

Where to find probability density plots for all elements?

Does anyone know where I can find something similar to this, but for all elements? I would love to find something with the same image quality. Also, is there any software that can produce images ...
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35 views

Magnetic field of one electron

I want to reproduce a calculation of the magnetic field at the atomic nuclei produced by one electron in hydrogen: Maxwell gives us: $\vec \nabla \times \vec B = \mu_0 \vec j$ Doing the surface ...
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36 views

Is there any well-defined, measurable atomic size?

Is there any well-defined, measurable size at the atomic scale? I was under the impression that the van der Waals radius was a good way of describing the size of an atom, but it turns out to be a ...
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33 views

Two-Photon Transitions

I'm reading these course notes on two-photon transitions at http://cua.mit.edu/8.421_S06/Chapter9.pdf But I can't understand why it looks like they do not allow for Autler-Townes splitting. In ...
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21 views

Can I get Magnesium into gas at room temperature?

This might sit squarely at the intersection of physics, chemistry, and quantum mechanics. I make gas discharge tubes. One color that evades me is green. Apparently Magnesium will do this, but I ...
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27 views

Can one measure experimentally the average distance between the two electrons in the excited state of helium in the singlet versus triplet states?

$\frac{1}{\lvert\ \vec(r_{1})-\vec(r_{2})\rvert}$ is a hermitian operator so I am supposing there could potentially be an observable with this which might be experimentally measured. We can measure ...
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18 views

Modelling populations of GE isotopes

I asked a question similar to this here: What combination of stable GE isotopes make up the germanium in a Ge(Li) spectrometer And got some very good answers. This question is instead based on the ...
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37 views

Coincidence summing in gamma spectrum

Question on coincidence summing here. I've been reading about the coincidence summing effect when a radionuclide has two energy levels that decay to another state in rapid succession. There is also ...
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28 views

How is it possible to combine various techniques in cold atom experiments?

I’ve been reading about laser-trapped cold atoms (6Li in particular, which is a fermion) and was amazed at the number of things to keep track of in the experiments, just to gain that degree of control ...
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25 views

Effect of nucleus geometry and states on the Coulomb barrier and the electric potential well surrounding the nucleus

In some models of the nucleus it has a geometric aspect due to the combination and alignments of the charges, magnetic moments and spins of the protons and neutrons it contains. Even in models that ...
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31 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 ...
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78 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 ...
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25 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 ...
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55 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 ...
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38 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 ...
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55 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 ...
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209 views

How does electron excitation work for the Bohr model with non hydrogen atoms?

I've seen a lot of explanations of electron excitation by photons in the Bohr model but they all use a hydrogen atom which only has one electron. How does the excitation work for atoms with more ...
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141 views

Hydrogen 2p3/2 -> 1s1/2 transition polarisation and angular distribution

Could you please help me. I have to calculate the intensity angular and polarisation distribution in hydrogen electric dipole transition $\text{2p}_{3/2}\rightarrow \text{1s}_{1/2}$. To do this I ...
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323 views

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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54 views

Polarizable molecule in E-field

If we have a linear molecule with a dipole moment $\mu$ in a static electric field $E$, the potential is given by $V = - \langle \mu,E \rangle$. What is the appropriate equation for the potential if ...
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24 views

Spatial Resolution in Magnetocardiography

In the science paper called Development of an optical cardio-magnetometer by George Bison, it is mentioned that spatial resolution of 10-20mm is required for mapping MCG signal(page 52). What does the ...
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36 views

Most atoms have a nonzero magnetic moment, right?

This is my feeling. But more is different. If atoms form a solid, it is hard to say whether the solid will be ferromagnetic or not.
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394 views

Thermal expansion of two bolts

I have this question asking me about the thermal expansions of two bolts, a steel one, and a brass one. I have the equation: $\ (\delta L/L)/T = \alpha $ I don't understand how I can use this ...
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34 views

An EM problem of polarized sphere

Today, I'm doing an EM problem and my question is exactly the same as this site shows: http://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=133501 To reiterate my confusion, why we can't use that integral ...
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61 views

Vacancy Generation / Annihilation Time (Relaxation Time)

Vacancy Generation/Annihilation Time, Recombination Time and Relaxation Time ($\tau$) are all synonymously used in atomic physics literatures. They're defined as the time that it takes for vacancies ...