N2 vs N1


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Victoria Dao 3G
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Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:50 pm

N2 vs N1

Postby Victoria Dao 3G » Wed Oct 21, 2020 6:14 pm

For problem #11 on the Sapling Homework (A violet line is observed at 434.0 nm in the spectrum of atomic hydrogen. Determine the values of n for the beginning and ending energy levels of the electron during the emission of energy that leads to this spectral line), why is it that 5 is N2 and 2 is N1? Does the electron not get excited to the 5th energy level THEN end at the 2nd energy level?

Maaria Abdel-Moneim 2G
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Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 10:09 pm

Re: N2 vs N1

Postby Maaria Abdel-Moneim 2G » Wed Oct 21, 2020 6:20 pm

N2 is the initial energy level that the electron is at and since it says it is an emission spectrum that means the electron is going from a higher energy level to a lower energy level. Therefore N2 will be 5 because it is starting at energy level 5 and N1 will be 2 because that is the lower energy level. In this case the electron is starting at energy level 5 where aren't taking into account where it started. Hope this helps!

Ashley Kim 3H
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Re: N2 vs N1

Postby Ashley Kim 3H » Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:30 pm

In the Rydberg formula, N1 means the final energy level and N2 means the initial early level. Since in this case 5 is N2 and 2 is N1, this means that the electron travelled from energy level 5 to energy level 2. The electron is not getting excited, but rather emitting energy.

Crystal Pan 2G
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Re: N2 vs N1

Postby Crystal Pan 2G » Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:34 pm

remember is Efinal - Einitial, so n2 is initial energy level and n1 is final energy level.

Lorraine Medina 3E
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Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 10:11 pm

Re: N2 vs N1

Postby Lorraine Medina 3E » Fri Oct 23, 2020 9:09 pm

Hi! As the other people have explained, n2 is the initial energy level and n1 is the final energy level. I agree that it can be a bit confusing because we are used to the "1" subscript being the first/initial number, but not in this case. Hope this helps!

DominicMalilay 1F
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Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:36 pm

Re: N2 vs N1

Postby DominicMalilay 1F » Fri Oct 23, 2020 10:28 pm

I was confused initially, but remember to also square the values of the energy levels if you use the Rydberg equation.

Melanie Lin 3E
Posts: 55
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:38 pm

Re: N2 vs N1

Postby Melanie Lin 3E » Sun Oct 25, 2020 3:05 pm

victoria_dao_3L wrote:For problem #11 on the Sapling Homework (A violet line is observed at 434.0 nm in the spectrum of atomic hydrogen. Determine the values of n for the beginning and ending energy levels of the electron during the emission of energy that leads to this spectral line), why is it that 5 is N2 and 2 is N1? Does the electron not get excited to the 5th energy level THEN end at the 2nd energy level?

If it helps, you could always use the formula for change in energy instead of using the Rydberg formula? I think it helps you understand what's going on a little bit better and Lavelle mentioned that the exam may require you to do that process as well.


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