Atom is the smallest unit of any substance. It is composed of certain subatomic particles; electrons, neutrons and protons. The arrangement of these subatomic particles in an atom is called the electronic structure of an atom.
The area around the nucleus with the highest probability of finding an electron is known as the electronic orbital. The Atomic physics and Quantum mechanics support the presence of electronic orbitals.
This is the distribution of electrons in various electronic orbitals around the nucleus. Electrons always occupy lower energy levels then move to higher energy levels.
The distribution of electrons in various orbitals follow certain rules as mentioned below:
Four quantum numbers are used to explain the position and energy of electrons in an atom.
Bohr’s atomic model explained the total energy of electrons as the sum of their potential energy and kinetic energy. The mathematical expression of orbital energy is:
Rydberg equation is used to calculate the wavelength and energy of electrons in transition from initial energy level to final energy level. The mathematical expression is:
R = Rydberg constant = 1.097 x 10⁷ m⁻¹
nₘ = Initial energy level
nₙ= Final energy level
Radius of atomic orbitals can be calculated with the help of value of “n” quantum number.
Here; r = radius, n = principle quantum number, Z = atomic number
Question 1: Identify the correct energy order for the electronic structure of an atom.
Question 2: Calculate the radius of the second atomic orbital of He atom.
r = radius
n = principle quantum number 2
Z = atomic number of He = 2
Substitute the values to calculate radius:
r =1.058 ×10⁻¹º m
Question 3: Calculate the wavelength in nanometers, if the electron in the hydrogen atom moves from n=2 to n=3.
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The electronic structure of an atom represents the sub-atomic particles with their proper position in an atom that makes the atom neutral.
The electronic structure of an atom explains the position of sub-atomic particles of an atom; electrons, protons and neutrons. The negatively charged electrons are always placed in certain energy levels around the nucleus. Here the nucleus is the center part of an atom that consists of protons and neutrons.
To draw the electronic structure of an atom, we need an exact number of electrons, protons and neutrons in an atom. Here electrons must be placed in different electronic shells according to their energy whereas neutrons and protons must be placed in the nucleus.
In the modern description of the electronic structure of an atom, the energy levels of electrons are further classified as subshell, orbitals etc. The modern description represents the exact number of electrons placed in each energy level.