Negatively charged particle with spin 1/2. A component of mundane terrestrial matter, and part of all neutral atoms and molecules. It has a mass about 1/1800 that of a proton. Its antiparticle is the positron.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

14
votes
3answers
2k views

Can two electrons get ever so close as to touch each other?

My friend and I were studying for our EM test when we started to think about what happens to the electric field near an infinite line of charge. $$E = \frac{\lambda}{2\pi\rho\epsilon_{0}}$$ As you ...
1
vote
1answer
16 views

Thermal emission cathode electron velocity distribution

I can't find any experimental data (or theoretical expression) on what is the velocity (or energy) distribution of thermal emission cathode electrons emmited from the cathode at approximately 1300K ...
1
vote
0answers
32 views

Momentum of electron problem [duplicate]

Recently, my friend bemused me with a question related to the momentum of an electron. The confusing logic is stated below: Since an electron is a particle and according to classical physics, we know ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

How does velocity relate to energy difference in Compton scattering?

I'm having trouble understanding what my professor is getting at asking in this question. I just visited her office and her explanation minutely helped. I'm hoping to get a bit more clarity on what is ...
8
votes
2answers
947 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
13 views

Difference between free electron and the electron in potential well [duplicate]

Is there any difference between free electrons and the electrons in potential well? Is there any energy difference between those two?
5
votes
1answer
78 views

Stable muon density inside a white dwarf star?

It occurs to me (though I'm hardly the first) that the decay $$ \mu^- \to e^- + \bar \nu_e + \nu_\mu $$ should be forbidden in electron-degenerate matter, since there must be an empty state available ...
4
votes
1answer
61 views

Only transverse photons are gauge-invariant (Peskin page 298)

Seven lines down from the top of page 298 of P & S, it says "Single particle states containing one electron, one positron, or one transversely polarized photon are gauge-invariant, while states ...
2
votes
4answers
189 views

How did photons and electrons arise out of the quark-gluon plasma?

I am just beginning to learn about the ideas of the early universe, so this is probably a beginner question. I understand that protons and neutrons (which are baryons, which are hadrons) are made out ...
2
votes
3answers
159 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
50 views

How hot particles can get [duplicate]

One way in which an object is affected by temperature rise is that the wavelength of the radiation it emits is gets smaller and smaller. Another way of looking at it is that as an object gets hotter, ...
1
vote
0answers
27 views

Recombination time for ionized atoms in a low pressure gas?

I am looking into some new physics and had the following question come up: You have a neutral gas of let's say, CO atoms at 1 nanoTorr. An electron(s) comes passing through the gas ionizing only 1% ...
-1
votes
1answer
34 views

Is the electron magnetic moment responsible for the Lorentz force?

My question about the sum of the electrons' magnetic moments in a wire(What is the sum of the electrons' magnetic moments in a wire?) had an answer which disappeared later. The answer was - if I ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

What is the sum of the electrons' magnetic moments in a wire?

The electron has a magnetic moment. This magnetic moment will be influenced in a electric field; the magnetic moments will be more or less aligned. During the movement of an electron in a wire under ...
4
votes
1answer
121 views

Electron Charge is 150%?

Is there a theory for why the charge of an electron is precisely 50% larger (magnitude) than a quark's? I have usually thought of this the other way around: the charge of a quark being 2/3 (or -2/3) ...
1
vote
2answers
261 views

What is the spin of an electron along the x-axis?

I know that an electron or any other particle for that matter, has a measured spin which is either up or down. This spin is along the z-axis. But what if we do not measure it along the z-axis and do ...
4
votes
1answer
77 views

If electrons are magnets do they attract each other?

It is said every electron is negatively charged and so they repel each other but if electrons are tiny magnets(which are responsible for atomic attraction and how solid magnet works) does it mean ...
1
vote
3answers
57 views

Does an electron move in a conductor?

The definition of current is flow of electric charge. But recently I have heard that the electrons cannot move, that they just transmit energy to the other electrons and so on.
0
votes
1answer
43 views

What are magnet poles?

You see the poles of a magnet on every magnet picture, and they are said to be in the direction of magnetic field lines, but what does that mean? Is the number of electrons different on one side of ...
3
votes
3answers
269 views

Negative energy levels in the diagram for a hydrogen atom

The higher the number of the shell (n), the higher is the energy level of the electron. However, why was it necessary to have negative values. So for example, when $n=1$, the energy could be $5 eV$ ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Photoelectric Effect - How are the electrons regained?

When the photons with enough energy impinge on a photocathode, it emits electrons. Does this mean that the solid will lose all its electron at one point? If not, how are electrons restored?
1
vote
3answers
154 views

The need for a 'particle description' of electrons

Is there any phenomenon where the 'wave description' of the electron's motion is not applicable? The reason for this question is to find out if there are any situations were quantum wave theories ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

Trapping an electron

Imagine that one could theoretically trap a single electron in a small box, with walls that somehow prevent the electron from passing through and out of the box. Now, the box begins to move in on ...
0
votes
2answers
48 views

If an atom is positively ionized, can is gain electrons if you emit photons at it?

I read somewhere that electrons and light are just electromagnetic radiation and are basically the same thing, does this mean that if you emit photons at an atom it will gain electrons?
2
votes
1answer
42 views

Is “microbunching” in a free electron laser limited by the Pauli exclusion principle?

As I understand it, a free electron laser can basically be pictured as a synchrotron light source with an undulator which by the particular setup causes the electrons to self-attune so that they ...
2
votes
2answers
73 views

Bekenstein bound for electron?

Using the Wikipedia version of the Bekenstein bound, and substituting the Wikipedia values for electron mass and radius, one obtains 0.0662 bits. Does this really mean that a system, any system, ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

Are voltages discrete when we zoom in enough?

Voltages are often thought of as continuous physical quantities. I was wondering whether by zooming in a lot, they are discrete. I feel like the answer to the above question is yes as voltages in the ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

An electron has no known internal structure, does that imply it has an unknown one?

I'm currently reading Alonso and Finn's Electromagnetism book. It explains that the spin contributes to the magnetic moment and is somewhat comparable to a rotation of the particle around its own ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

Can an electron make a transition between sub energy states of the same energy level?

Electrons make transition between different energy levels - say, $n =3$ to $n=2$ or $n =1$, as per the applicable selection rules. My question is: can an electron make transitions between sub energy ...
4
votes
2answers
137 views

What restores balance to a repulsive electric force on an electroscope?

I am an amateur physics enthusiast (during the day I am a police officer), and recently, I learned how to build an electroscope. I regret that I am learning how wonderful our universe is so late in my ...
4
votes
3answers
134 views

How do photons know they can or can't excite electrons?

This might be a stupid question, but nonetheless, it has been bothering me. If you take a photon, make it go through some atoms in a solid, liquid or whatever, then you have the chance of this photon ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

Understanding EM Fields

I am an electronics engineering major and some questions arise when studying communications technology that utilizes wireless technology. In particular, I am more of a complete picture kind of person, ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

What is electron hole? Isn't it just an absence of electron? [duplicate]

I was reading Wikipedia article about impact ionization and there's something in it's definition that makes me wonder: Impact ionization is the process in a material by which one energetic charge ...
0
votes
1answer
20 views

How does exciting an electron's surrounding electromagnetic field cause 'electron excitation'?

In more meaningful words than the ones above, how does adding energy to the EM field cause the electron to to change orbitals or oscillate in a different pattern.
5
votes
2answers
381 views

How many subatomic particles can absorb/emit photons?

Is the electron the only subatomic particle that can absorb and emit a photon?
1
vote
1answer
37 views

What factors cause the velocity saturation to occur at different electric fields for different materials?

In semiconductors the velocity of carriers gets saturated after a certain value of electric field. In silicon it occurs at around $10^4 kV/cm$ and in GaAs at some other value. What factors are ...
2
votes
2answers
80 views

What is Quantum jump of an electron?

Can any one define quantum jump 9 quantities jump of an electron ? I know it it is a silly question but can anyone please explain me in detail.I am a learning about the structure of atom and I want ...
6
votes
2answers
987 views

Can I steal your electron?

The following paragraph has been extracted from the Wikipedia (Atomic orbitals): Simple pictures showing orbital shapes are intended to describe the angular forms of regions in space where the ...
6
votes
6answers
456 views

Electron shells in atoms: What causes them to exist as they do?

I have seen similar posts, but I haven't seen what seems to be a clear and direct answer. Why do only a certain number of electrons occupy each shell? Why are the shells arranged in certain distances ...
0
votes
0answers
49 views

Double slit experiment with slit material acting as a detector

Suppose the classic experimental setup of the double slit experiment. What is the probability that an electron does not pass through the slits? That is, for every single electron that comes from ...
1
vote
2answers
49 views

Correlation in electron gas

In the textbooks that I read (namely Ashcroft/Mermin , Marder, etc.) it seems that a distinction is made between the correlations in electron gas and a Couloumb interaction between the electrons. What ...
0
votes
1answer
38 views

How do I describe the energy an electron gains (and loses) in a circuit?

I am looking at the simple circumstance of an electron traveling through a long wire by a potential. I see how one would be motivated to use the usual formula, W=F*d, to describe the electron's net ...
4
votes
3answers
185 views

Where does the electron get its high magnetic moment from?

I have always found the concept of spin a little weird. I had read somewhere that for the charge or size of electrons, their magnetic field is very high. In order to produce such fields, they must be ...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

Are all identical fermions in orthogonal states as opposed to different general states?

A professor told me that most physicists assume that all identical fermions are in completely orthogonal states. If that is true, then does that mean that that the total wave function is highly ...
1
vote
2answers
30 views

Would a magnetic field be affected permanently if it interacts with another magnetic field?

Would a magnetic field still be changed after it stops interacting with another magnetic field. As far as I know, a magnetic field is generated by spinning electrons. Thus, does a magnetic field ...
0
votes
1answer
37 views

How does a minority carrier diffuse?

I have gone through a lot of questions but none of them ask how do the minority carriers approach the depletion layer in the first place. When a p-n junction is formed, negative space charge ...
65
votes
2answers
10k views

Why doesn't matter pass through other matter if atoms are 99.999% empty space?

The ghostly passage of one body through another is obviously out of the question if the continuum assumption were valid, but we know that at the micro, nano, pico levels (and beyond) this is not even ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

A question about the Thomson experiment

Recently, I was studying about Thomson's experiment with cathode rays. My textbook shows it like this. It says: When only electric field is applied, the electrons deviate from their path and ...
0
votes
3answers
62 views

The measurement of electricity

I'm a student trying to understand electricity. As I learned from school, electricity is the flow of electrons, but I'm confused about the measurement of electricity. As I learned, voltage is the ...
5
votes
4answers
458 views

How does the speed of electrons change around a circuit?

I have been thinking about ways of teaching electronics and I'm wondering if the following is true... For starters, when we talk about voltage as energy per unit charge, is this energy manifest ...