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What are three rules for writing the electron configuration of elements?
The aufbau principle, the Pauli exclusion principle, and Hund's rule.
Explain why the actual electron configuration for some elements differ from those assigned using the aufbau principle.
Because half-filled sublevels are not as stable as filled sublevels, but they are more stable than other configurations.
Why does one electron in a potassium atom go into the fourth energy level instead of squeezing into the third energy level along with the eight already there?
Because the third shell is full, the rule of quantum mechanics prevent the third level from holding more than eight electrons.
What are electron configurations?
The arrangement of electrons of an atom in its ground state into various orbitals around the nuclei of atoms
What is the aufbau principle?
The rule that electrons occupy the orbitals of lowest energy first
What is the Pauli exclusion principle?
An atomic orbital may describe at most two electrons each with opposite spin direction
What is the Hund's rule?
Electrons occupy orbitals of the same energy in a way that makes the number or electrons with the same spin direction as large as possible