Clarification on magnetic quantum number

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Joanna Pham - 2D
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Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby Joanna Pham - 2D » Thu May 03, 2018 8:33 am

I was wondering if someone could clarify my confusion about the magnetic quantum number (ml).

I understand ml goes from l to -l. So if for example, ml = -2, -1, 0, 1, and 2, do each of the numbers correspond to an orbital? For instance, is -2 referencing to the d-orbitals along the negative x, y, z axis, -1 to the p-orbitals on the negative x, y, z axis, etc.?

Nina_A_Section1E
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Re: Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby Nina_A_Section1E » Thu May 03, 2018 9:19 am

Yes, l refers to the subshells: s, p, d, f, and ml refers to the orbitals within the subshells, so for p when l = 1, ml = -1, 0, or 1 representing px, py, and pz orbitals

Sam Metzger 1C
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Re: Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby Sam Metzger 1C » Fri May 04, 2018 3:23 pm

Yes, it's also important to note that for example the ml values (1,0,-1) for p do not necessarily correspond to px, py, and pz in that order. The order of the orbitals doesn't matter the only thing that does is how many electrons are in each one.

Alicia Beebe
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Re: Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby Alicia Beebe » Sun May 06, 2018 2:26 pm

One way to think about it that helped me is that ml describes the orientation of different subshells. The s-orbital is shaped like just a sphere, so there is only one distinguishable way to orient it, indicating that there is only one ml, which is true. The p- orbital is like a three-dimensional infinite sign, so there are three distinguishable ways to orient that, which is why there are three values of ml when l=1, and so on.

vivianndo_1L
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Re: Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby vivianndo_1L » Wed May 09, 2018 12:21 am

Could anyone help me figure out the reason WHY the values of ml go from "-l" to "l" though? I feel like I'm still conceptually confused.

Nimrat Brar 1E
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Re: Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby Nimrat Brar 1E » Thu May 10, 2018 2:13 am

Alicia Beebe wrote:One way to think about it that helped me is that ml describes the orientation of different subshells. The s-orbital is shaped like just a sphere, so there is only one distinguishable way to orient it, indicating that there is only one ml, which is true. The p- orbital is like a three-dimensional infinite sign, so there are three distinguishable ways to orient that, which is why there are three values of ml when l=1, and so on.


So, would there then be 0 orbitals (because ml=0) if l=0? I

Alicia Beebe
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Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2018 11:01 am

Re: Clarification on magnetic quantum number

Postby Alicia Beebe » Sun May 13, 2018 9:03 pm

No, there is ONE way to distinguishably orient it when l=0, meaning the s orbital, so there would be one value of ml, making only one orbital. the one value of ml is that ml=0.


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