how electrons in an atom are distributed
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The behavior of each electron in an atom can be described by a wave equation. Solution?
The solution to the wave equation is orbitals. Orbitals tell us the energy of the electron and the volume of space around the nucleus where and electron is most likely to be found.
NOTE: The elctrons in an atom can be thought of as occupying a set of concentric shells that surround the nucleus. The first shell is the closest, the 2nd shell is farther away and so on and so forth. Each shell has subshells known as atomic orbitals. A maximum of 2 electrons can coexist in an atomic orbital. Each atomic orbital has a characteristic shape and energy and occupies a characteristic volume of space.
REMEMBER: the closer the atomic orbital is to the nucleus, the lower is its energy
- Consists of only 1 s atomic orbital
- Can contain no more than 2 electrons
- Consists of 1 s and 3 degenerate (orbitals that have the same energy) p orbitals
- Can contain no more than 8 electrons
- Consists of 1 s, 3 degenerate p, and 5 degenerate d orbitals.
- Can contain no more than 18 electrons
- Consists of 1 s, 3 degenerate p, 5 degenerate d, and 7 degenerate f orbitals.
- Can contain no more than 32 electrons
An electron always goes into the available orbital with the lowest energy. REMEMBER: the
closer the atomic orbital is to the nucleus, the lower is its energy.
So a 1s orbital is lower in energy than a 2s orbital because the 1s
orbital is closer to the nucleus.
Pauli Exclusion Principle
No more than two electrons can occupy each atomic orbital
The two electrons must be of opposite spin
It is called the exclusion principle because it limits the number of electrons that can occupy any
From these first two rules, we can assign electrons to atomic orbitals for atoms that contain one, two, three, four, or five electrons.
For atoms containing 6 or more electrons, we need Hunds rule: when there are degenerate orbitals-two or more orbitals with the same energy- an electron will occupy and empty orbital before it will pair up with another electron. This way, electron repulsion is minimized. (pg 7 in book)
- Found in inner shells
- Do not participate in chemical bonding
- Found in the outermost shell
- Elements in the same column of the periodic table have the same number of valence electrons
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