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In Lavelle's lectures, he talked about what each of the variables represent. I believe it was his week 3 Friday Lecture. I have attached a picture that should help with this problem.
- helpful table for values of l.png (18.74 KiB) Viewed 61 times
Also, don't forget to take into account the two different magnetic fields that electrons can occupy inside the same orbital - for every space allotted by calculating the total potential values of ml, there can be a maximum of two electrons, according to the Pauli exclusion principle.
It helps me to go through it with the chart that Dr. Lavelle showed us in his lecture Friday of week 3. So for example, if it tells you that n=3, you know that there are three subshells (s,p, and d). In the s subshell, there are two spots for electrons, in the p subshell, there are 6 spots for electrons and in the d subshell, there are 10 places for electrons. This means that theres a total of 18 spots for electrons when n=3. When it gets more specific for example l=0, you know to only refer to the s orbital so theres only two spots for electrons no matter what n is equal to. I beleive someone posted a chart above that is helpful for that part, hope that helps :)
For me, the best way to think of this is the shell all of a certain amount of electrons like 5d block holds 2 per 5 orbitals. Therefore, the periodic table is a really good place to count electrons because electrons match the atomic number. Also, Ml is one electron in an orbital. So my advice uses the periodic table to get familiar with electrons.
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