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Haley Dveirin 4B wrote:how come when the book asks you to give the ground-state electron configuration for Ni^2+, the answer is [Ar]3d^8 and not [Ar]3d^64s^2?
You have to remove electrons from the highest energy shell first, which in this case would be n=4. This is because the electrons in the highest energy shell, which is the farthest away from the nucleus, are held less tightly due to the inner electrons in the lower energy shells shielding them from the attraction to the positively charged nucleus.
Because electrons are removed from the highest energy level first. When electrons are filled in 3d orbitals, 4s orbital has higher energy than 3d. Therefore when electrons are removed electrons from higher energy level are removed first. That's why Ni2+ has ground-state electron configuration of [Ar]3d^8.
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