A New Approach to the Atom:
1. Describe the atomic orbitals in terms of their shape, size, and energy.
quantum-mechanical model electron density orbital principle energy level sublevel
Probability & Orbitals:
Electron orbitals can more correctly referred to as electron clouds. An orbital is simply the region around the nucleus where an electron is likely to be found. Since we learned from Heisenberg's uncertainty principle that we can never be sure of where an electron is, we can say that wherever the electron cloud is dense electrons are more likely to be found. There are s,p,d,& f orbitals. Here are examples of the s & p orbitals:
Principle Energy Levels;
The principle energy levels relate to Bohr's model of n=1, n=2, & n=3. As you will see, as the energy levels of the atom increase, so do the sublevels within that energy level.
Number of electrons possible for each sublevel:
Spin and anti-spin:
Electrons come in pairs. As the electron spins on its axis it creates a small magnetic force (like a magnet). In order to be neutral, the atom must also posses an electron with an opposite spin (anti-spin).
Last modified: October 21, 2002