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How do electrons get the energy to jump from one orbital to the next when in stationary orbits the electron does not radiate energy

How do electrons get the energy to jump from one orbital to the next when in stationary orbits the electron does not radiate energy

Grade:9

2 Answers

Saurabh Koranglekar
askIITians Faculty 10341 Points
11 months ago
If you take a hydrogen atom, that is the system of one electron and one proton, and you solve the Schrodinger equation for it then you get a number of eigenfunctions. These are the well known hydrogenic orbitals; 1s, 2s, 2p, etc. These solutions are time independant so an excited hydrogen atom like2p12p1will remain stable forever. I would guess this is what you mean in your question.

But in emission and absorption the system is not time independant because now we have a three component system of an electron, a proton and an electromagnetic wave (or photon if you prefer), and of course the EM wave has to be time dependant because it travels atcc. The Schrodinger equation for this system is not the same as the Schrodinger equation for an isolated hydrogen atom, and the solutions are not the hydrogenic orbitals.

This is probably more intuitive for absorption rather than emission. In absorption the EM wave approaches the atom and perturbs it. This mixes up the hydrogenic orbitals so the atom is in a combination of different states, and as a result there is a non-zero probability that it will absorb the EM wave and settle into an excited state. But the equations of (non-relativistic) quantum mechanics are time symmetric, so if there is a finite probability for the atom to absorb a photon and change to an excited state, there is also a non-zero probability for an atom in an excited state to emit a photon and change to a lower energy state.
Vikas TU
14149 Points
11 months ago
,the answer came from Neil Bohr,that the orbit of the electrons are quantized and each electron is in its own orbit revolving with a certain orbital angular momentum L,in its orbit does not emit energy ,but if it changes orbit down, it emits energy equal the difference between the energy of its first state

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