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When a monochromatic light hits a surface there are two possible scenarios. First energy of the light is greater or equal to work function and second energy of light is smaller than work function. In the second case if the electron can't be emitted from the metal surface where the energy of the photon goes ? Also why a type of light with energy less than work function cant cause electron emission ? If electrons are in specific states in metal surface then shoulnd't more and more photons hitting the surface will cause the electron to higher states and sometime an electron will be emitted ?

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  • $\begingroup$ have a look hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/mod2.html $\endgroup$ – anna v May 25 at 14:15
  • $\begingroup$ All of your doubts will be cleared just by considering the fact that ENERGY IS QUANTIZED. Please read about it. What it says is that an electron can't just absorb a photon of arbitrary energy. It should be an whole number multiple of the energy of the of the electron. $\endgroup$ – user8718165 May 25 at 14:38
  • $\begingroup$ yes energy of the electron is quantized (bounded to an atom). But couldn't the electron stuck up energy and start getting excited over and over ?Or it returns to ground state so fast after getting excited? $\endgroup$ – ado sar May 25 at 23:15

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