Ground-State electron configuration

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Rita Chen 1B
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Ground-State electron configuration

Postby Rita Chen 1B » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:30 pm

Can someone please explain to me what it means by ground-state? What is the difference between ground state and excited state?

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Re: Ground-State electron configuration

Postby ZainAlrawi_1J » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:34 pm

The ground state describes an atom at its lowest possible energy level.
An atom is at an excited state when the energy level of its electron is at a higher energy level than its ground state.

You can tell them apart by looking at the electron configuration, as any electron configuration in which the last electron (the valence electron) is in a higher energy orbital describes an element in an excited state.

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Re: Ground-State electron configuration

Postby Brian_Ho_2B » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:35 pm

Ground state electron configurations correctly follow all of the rules listed by Aufbau's principle (correct order of subshells according to increasing energy), Pauli Exclusion principle (two electrons per orbital; each electron has a unique set of four quantum numbers), and Hund's rule (fill orbitals with parallel spins before adding electrons with spin down). Excited state configurations disobey one or more of these rules.
Edit: I realized that I wrote this thinking that you were referring to electron diagrams. Although it doesn't directly answer your question, I won't delete it in case my comment helps anyone.

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Re: Ground-State electron configuration

Postby Isha_Maniyar_Dis2E » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:37 pm

When an electron is in its ground-state, this means it is in its lowest-possible energy level. When the electron is excited, it absorbs energy and jumps to an energy level higher than the ground state energy level. Usually, the electron is not stable when it is in an excited state, and will eventually move back down to its ground state.

Hope this helped!

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