### The values of L and ML

Posted:

**Thu Oct 25, 2018 11:30 pm**In the lecture, we went over that l=n-1 but it also says that it can be anything lower than n. Why is this, and when do we stick to n-1?

Created by Dr. Laurence Lavelle

https://lavelle.chem.ucla.edu/forum/

https://lavelle.chem.ucla.edu/forum/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=34856

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Posted: **Thu Oct 25, 2018 11:30 pm**

In the lecture, we went over that l=n-1 but it also says that it can be anything lower than n. Why is this, and when do we stick to n-1?

Posted: **Thu Oct 25, 2018 11:40 pm**

l refers to the subshells of n. The allowed values of l depend on the value of n and range from 0 to n-1. For example, if n=3, then l can = 0, 1, or 2.

Posted: **Sun Oct 28, 2018 4:02 pm**

L just refers to what sub shell the electron is in. The point of L=n-1 is to show the max value of L that it could be. So the value of L is not always going to be n-1.

Posted: **Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:16 pm**

l = n-1 refers to the max value of l. This means that the value of l can be lower than n-1, but not higher. For example, the 3p orbital is n=3 and l=1. The l value can either be 0, 1, or 2. Since n=3, l max is l=3-1=2, so for n=3,the possible orbitals are 3s, 3p, 3d.