Structure of electrons

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Nikita Patra 3J
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:16 am

Structure of electrons

Postby Nikita Patra 3J » Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:05 am

I'm confused about the differences between orbitals and sub-shells or sub-energy levels. Are they interchangeable terms or completely different parts of the atom?

Ramneet Sandhu 3D
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2019 12:16 am

Re: Structure of electrons

Postby Ramneet Sandhu 3D » Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:11 am

Orbitals make up sub-shells; they are not the same thing. Orbitals are composed of electrons that have the same energy level, shape, and orientation. Electrons that have the same orbital shape are in the same sub-shell.

Frederick Keith_4C
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2019 12:19 am

Re: Structure of electrons

Postby Frederick Keith_4C » Sun Oct 20, 2019 11:05 am

Shells are composed of e- that share the same principal quantum number (n),
Subshells are composed of e- that share the same angular momentum quantum number (l)
Orbitals are composed of e- that are in the same energy level but have different spins (up or down).

Siddiq 1E
Posts: 106
Joined: Fri Aug 09, 2019 12:15 am

Re: Structure of electrons

Postby Siddiq 1E » Sun Oct 20, 2019 1:07 pm

So I figured this out regarding D11: I think of orbitals as the spots for the electrons. So the s orbital has one spot (fitting two electrons with different spins), the p orbital has 3 spots (6 electrons), d has 5 spots, and f has 7. The subshells are each letter themselves. Hope this helps!

Sanjana K - 2F
Posts: 102
Joined: Sat Sep 07, 2019 12:17 am
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Re: Structure of electrons

Postby Sanjana K - 2F » Sun Oct 20, 2019 1:52 pm

This picture might help. Orbitals are arranged into shells and subshells. Shells are orbitals with the same value of n & subshells are orbitals with the same value of n and l. In the picture, you'll notice that anything from energy level "2" is of the same shell (so 2s and 2p belong to the same shell because you only need the same n). But when you're indicating subshells, 2s belongs to a different subshell than 2p because the value of n and l must both be the same. In terms of orbitals, 2s, 2px, 2py, and 2pz all belong to completely different ones.
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IScarvie 1E
Posts: 66
Joined: Sat Aug 17, 2019 12:16 am

Re: Structure of electrons

Postby IScarvie 1E » Sun Oct 20, 2019 1:56 pm

An orbital has three quantum numbers, while a shell is only defined by n


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