## Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

Ashita Tanwar 3H
Posts: 30
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:23 am

### Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

What does it mean when delta E turns out to be negative after calculating the energy difference between two energy levels? I'm not sure if the sign makes a difference

amogha_koka3I
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:24 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

It is negative because the electron's energy has decreased and the energy is released as electromagnetic radiation, hope this helps!

mahika_nayak_3L
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:26 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

The negative sign means that the bound electron has a lower energy value that a free electron, and in the calculations the sign is negative because energy is released and decreasing as a result of the reaction. The distinction does matter and it is important to ensure that ΔE is calculated using the final minus the initial n level.

804994652
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:26 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

Anytime energy is released it is considered negative.

904914909
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:26 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

When energy is released, it is negative/exothermic and when energy is absorbed, the reaction is positive/endothermic

Kaylee Kang 1G
Posts: 65
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:24 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

When delta E turns out to be negative, it means that the reaction released energy.

Chris Freking 2G
Posts: 60
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:29 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

When delta E is negative, it means that energy has been released. Positive delta E refers to the absorption of energy.

angelagd3l
Posts: 32
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:26 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

Does the answer always have to be negative? Since its decreasing?

Sydney Tay 2B
Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2018 12:20 am

### Re: Negative v. Positive when calculating energy

Since the electron is decreasing in energy levels, it is losing energy and therefore would have a negative value. However, as it decreases in energy level it releases a photon which has a positive value in order to offset the previous negative values since energy can neither be created nor destroyed.